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Riggs, Marlon (1957–1994)

documentary film awards video

RIGGS, MARLON (1957–1994). Documentary filmmaker, educator, poet. Born in Ft. Worth, Texas, Riggs graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University in 1978 with a B.A. in history. He earned his M.A. in journalism from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1981, and returned there to teach documentary film in 1987. He was the recipient of numerous awards, including Emmy Awards in 1987 and 1991, a Peabody Award in 1989, and an Erik Barnouw Award in 1992. His writings have appeared in scholarly and literary journals, and his video productions brought him both praise and controversy. His video works on the ethnic stereotyping of African Americans in the media and various other forms of popular culture, Ethnic Notions , 1987, and Color Adjustment , 1989, were well received when they aired on public television stations across the country. However, his 55 minute poetic essay on black gay males, Tongues Untied , 1988, was considered obscene by some, and caused a rage of controversy over government funding and censorship. The project received numerous awards, including Best Documentary of the Berlin International Film Festival, Best Independent Experimental Work by the Los Angeles Film Critics, and Best Video by the New York Documentary Film Festival. Riggs died of AIDS in April 1994.

Filmography: Ethnic Notions , 1986; Tongues Untied , 1988; Color Adjustment , 1989; Non, Je Ne Regrette Rein (No Regret) , 1992; Black Is … Black Ain’t , 1994.

Right of Way (1983) - Overview, Synopsis, Critique [next] [back] Riemann, Georg Friedrich Bernhard

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