NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 20, 2014 — Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY) will be one of the host sites for this years American Black Film Festival (ABFF).  In its 18th year, the ABFF will be held in New York City, June 19-22, 2014.

The ABFF is a four-day event dedicated to showcasing quality films by and about people of African descent. Committed to the belief that Black content creators and artists deserve the same opportunities as their mainstream counterparts, ABFF founder, Jeff Friday conceived the festival in 1997 as a vehicle to promote diversity in the film and television industry. Today it serves as the preeminent pipeline to new Black talent before and behind the camera, and is now regarded as one of the leading film festivals in the world.

The festival is an incredible opportunity for our students to have access to a multi-day film festival with global reach,” says Dr. Tilokie Depoo, Dean of the MCNY School for Business.  “We are truly excited to welcome the ABFF to MCNY.”

The following sessions, part of the ABFF University Master Class Series, presented by the Time Warner Foundation in association with the ABFF Foundation and Metropolitan College of New York will take at the MCNY Conference Center, 431 Canal Street, NYC.

Friday, June 20:

  • 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. – Bill Duke’s Actors Boot Camp
  • 1:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. – Master Class: “How to Avoid the Pitfalls of Producing” with National Director of SAGIndie, Dariien Gibson
  • 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. – Writing for Television  with guest speaker: Terence Winter (The Wolf of Wall Street, Boardwalk Empire, The Sopranos)

Saturday, June 21:

  • 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. – Master Class: Bill Duke’s Actors Boot Camp (Day II)
  • 1:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. – Master Class: Robert Townsend’s “The Ultimate Pitch”
  • 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. – Master Class: Rob Hardy’s Amazing Stories

“One of the most important ideas we teach in the program is maintaining focus on and commitment to providing a voice to those who are underrepresented or misrepresented in the media.  Our students and faculty use their skills to not only succeed in the media industry but to foster inclusiveness and diversity in the messages and operations of today’s media,” shares Kristie Velasco, Director of MCNY’s MBA in Media Management Department.  “It is an honor to have been invited to participate and host the ABFF University Master Class Series at MCNY.”

Each year, Metropolitan College of New York School for Business MBA in Media Management program hosts its Annual Short Film Festival.  This year, Jeff Friday served as the keynote speaker.  Impressed and delighted by the response of MCNY students and alumni, Jeff Friday saw a perfect union between the College and ABFF.

Mr. Friday entered the film industry in 1996 when he became President of UniWorld Films, a former division of advertising agency UniWorld Group Inc. His success there put him in the forefront of the independent black film movement and sparked his commitment to transform the business of black cinema. Now celebrating its 18th year, ABFF relocated to New York City and remains committed to broadening the mainstream embrace of Black culture.

The Festival includes four days of Hollywood premieres, indie films and dynamic events such as ABFF’s new Entertainment and Lifestyle Expo, celebrity conversations, master classes, film and TV focused panels, plus the hit comedy show, are all being staged to entertain, inform and connect people with a common passion for Black culture.

For tickets and information, please visit


About Metropolitan College of New York

Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, MCNY was founded in 1964 as the Talent Corps by Audrey Cohen, an educational visionary and activist. Through development and training for new professional positions, the Talent Corps created employment for thousands of people. It became The College for Human Services, later Audrey Cohen College, and today Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY). MCNY continues the tradition of offering highly motivated learners an education that combines applied skills and professional knowledge to effect personal transformation and positive change in the workplace and community. MCNY is a not-for-profit, accredited, independent college. Full year-round offerings accelerate degree completion, and a unique approach to learning permits close integration of workplace activities and study. MCNY is conveniently located in Hudson Square where SoHo meets TriBeCa at 431 Canal Street, NY, NY 10013. For more information on MCNY, visit or call 800.33.THINK.