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(Recent photo of Robert King with US Congressman John Conyers)

The new Canadian film about Robert H. King of the Angola 3, Hard Time, will be shown by New Filmmakers New York at 6pm on Wednesday, January 15, The screening will be held at 32 Second Avenue (at 2nd street) in New York City.

Ron Harpelle HARD TIME (2012, 41 minutes, video)

Hard Time is a film about Robert Hillary King of the Angola 3. King was a political prisoner who spent 29 years in solitary confinement in the infamous Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. The film focuses on racism and human rights in the U.S. penal system, and draws attention to the plight of Herman Wallace and Albert Woodfox, the other members of the Angola 3, who have been held in solitary confinement for more than 40 years. Together they formed they created a prison chapter of the Black Panther Party to fight for better conditions, security for inmates and justice behind bars.

Learn more about Robert King at www.kingsfreelines.com, and read his autobiography. which includes this short description of his book ‘From the Bottom of the Heap.’
In 1970, a jury convicted Robert Hillary King of a crime he did not commit and sentenced him to 35 years in prison. He became a member of the Black Panther Party while in Angola State Penitentiary, successfully organizing prisoners to improve conditions. In return, prison authorities beat him, starved him, and gave him life without parole after framing him for a second crime. He was thrown into solitary confinement, where he remained in a six by nine foot cell for 29 years as one of the Angola 3. In 2001, the state grudgingly acknowledged his innocence and set him free. This is his story.

It begins at the beginning: born black, born poor, born in Louisiana in1942, King journeyed to Chicago as a hobo at the age of 15. He married and had a child, and briefly pursued a semi-pro boxing career to help provide for his family. Just a teenager when he entered the Louisiana penal system for the first time, King tells of his attempts to break out of this system, and his persistent pursuit of justice where there is none.

Yet this remains a story of inspiration and courage, and the triumph of the human spirit. The conditions in Angola almost defy description, yet King never gave up his humanity, or the work towards justice for all prisoners that he continues to do today. From the Bottom of the Heap, so simply and humbly told, strips bare the economic and social injustices inherent in our society, while continuing to be a powerful literary testimony to our own strength and capacity to overcome.

–ABOUT NEW FILMMAKERS NY

(www.newfilmmakers.com)

The NewFilmmakers Series was begun in 1998 by NYU Film Students in order to show their work and promote themselves in New York film community. Then, and now, most festivals and screening programs in the city only screened known and established filmmakers and there were few that are open to new filmmakers.

Without sacrificing our original mission NewFilmmakers has grown into recognized international screening series and over the past fifteen years has screened over 600 feature and 2,000 short films. In 2000 we brought the Havana Film Festival to New York and in 2002 we started the highly successful NewFilmmakers Los Angeles. Recently we started NewFilmmakers Online.

NewFilmmakers screens a wide range of films including animation, documentaries, shorts, and features. Many are films and videos overlooked by traditional film festivals. NewFilmmakers NY screens every week and sometimes more at Anthology Film Archives on the Lower East Side. NewFilmmakers also programs the Soho House Screening Series in New York & Los Angeles.

NewFilmmakers is sponsored by Barney Oldfield Management, Angelika Entertainment, Prophet Pictures, SXM, and H2O Distribution.

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