Joel Zito Araújo was the big honoree on Monday night, the 15th, at the 50th Gramado Festival. He received the Eduardo Abelim trophy, which honors the pioneer of gaucho cinema. Joel has been a warrior in the discussion of issues related to the representation – and participation – of black people in Brazilian audiovisual, not just in cinema. He gave an emotional speech remembering his grandfather, a black farmer in Minas, and his mother, who was a maid.
“All my cinema was born from my desire to pay homage and reverence to my mother”, said the filmmaker. The Denial of Brazil, Daughters of the Wind, Rita’s Father. For the second film, Joel Zito was awarded a super prize in Gramado.
It rained a lot on Monday night. A waterfall gushed from the ceiling on the Palace of Festivals stage, but the ceremony went on anyway. “Xangô, the orixá of thunder, was announcing my arrival”, said Joel Zito.
The festival has celebrated diversity. It hosted a beautiful feature from Acre, Noites Alienígenas, by Sérgio de Carvalho, and the new, and very strong, feature by one of the best known and most active directors of current Brazilian cinema. O Pastor e o Guerrilheiro, by José Eduardo Belmonte, retraces the Araguaia guerrilla. Producer Nilson Rodrigues brought in two former guerrillas who gave their testimony – Juca Ferreira and José Genoino – and were greatly applauded, for their sincerity and emotion.
The information is from the newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo.