ENGLEWOOD — The Second Annual Englewood Film Festival kicks off Friday at Kennedy-King College with a showing of the documentary on the late actor and Englewood native Bernie Mac, which will be attended by his widow.
"Bernie Mac is a worldwide legend who just happens to hail from Englewood," said festival founder Mark Harris, who is a director and producer of independent films and is also an Englewood native.
The film festival will be held through Monday at Kennedy-King College and at Team Englewood Academy High School, at 6201 S. Stewart Ave. and the recently shuttered ICE Chatham 14 Theater, 210 W. 87th St. The festival's organizers have been reassured that ICE will honor its contract and show the films.
Workshops, seven movie screenings and countless networking opportunities will be available, said Harris. Last year, the film festival was held at Lindblom Math and Science Academy High School in Englewood and was attended by 500 people.
Harris, now a Hollywood movie director, writer and producer, is also hopeful that the film festival will showcase the good things that happen in Englewood.
"I know what it is like to live in a neighborhood that is on the news all the time for bad things," Harris said.
"Everything and and everyone from Englewood is not bad," he said. "I want people to see that all black kids that come out of Englewood are not into crime. A lot of us have done well and want to help others do the same."
Besides Bernie Mac (born Bernard McCullough) and Harris, other Englewood natives include Chicago Bulls star Derrick Rose and actress and singer Jennifer Hudson.
Bernie Mac's widow Rhonda McCullough was not available for comment, but is expected to attend the documentary screening, according to Alisa Inez, who co-founded the film festival with Harris.
"She will be there," Inez said. "Ms. McCollough is a big supporter of the film festival because she knows film is what saved her husband from the streets."
Four movies will be shown at the ICE theater, an arrangement made prior to its surprising Oct. 19 closing.
"We have been assured that our contract will be honored," added Inez.
Alisa Starks, founder and president of Inner City Entertainment, did not return calls seeking comment. ICE still runs a second theater on the West Side at 3330 W. Roosevelt Road.
The movies set to be shown at ICE on Saturday are "Walls That Bleed" (4 p.m.); "The Good Life" (5:50 p.m.); "Note To Self" (7:30 p.m.); and, on Sunday, "A Million Colours" (6:30 p.m.). Also on Saturday, "No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson" (11:30 a.m.) and "The Wayman Tisdale Story" (1 p.m.) will both be shown at Team Englewood Academy High School.
For more information about the film festival or to purchase tickets, visit www.englewoodfilmfest.com.