Thursday, August 16, 2012

Bill Duke

Bill Duke is the legendary African American Godfather of American Cinema, who recently received a Lifetime Achievement Tribute from the Directors Guild of America as he joined the ranks of directors Stephen Spielberg, Alfred Hitchcock, and Clint Eastwood. But what makes Bill Duke standout from these other directors is the fact that he is a director who paved the way for African Americans in cinema beginning in the early 1970's when Spike Lee was just a teenager.

Billis the Founder and CEO of Duke Media, formerly Yagya Productions, which has been successfully producing film and television for over 30 years. Duke Media is recognized as a world wide leader in leveraging media via the new film industry paradigm of the internet. The Bill Duke Web Network has established an international following that has proven viewers crave to be both entertained and educated. This "Edutainment" mission exemplifies Bill Duke and Duke Media.

Bill Duke serves on the Board of Trustees at the American Film Institute. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has also appointed him to the California State Film Commission Board. Bill Duke served as the Time Warner Endowed Chair in the Department of Radio Television and Film at Howard University in Washington, DC. He was then appointed to the National Endowment of the Humanities by President Bill Clinton.

Bill Duke's directing credits include The Killing Floor, A Rage in Harlem, SisterAct 2, Deep Cover, Hoodlum, The Cemetery Club, Cover and Not Easily Broken. Currently in post production are the films Black Diamonds: The Evolution of Blacks in Baseball and Dark Girls.

Bill Duke's acting credits include Predator, American Gigolo, Car Wash, Commando, Menace II Society, Bird on a Wire, The Limey, Get Rich or Die Trying, X-Men 3, the independent film Yellow, the soon to be released Henry's Crime with Keanu Reeves and James Caan, and The Big Bang with Antonio Banderas.

Bill Duke is a humanitarian and activist who devotes his time to charity and not for profit organizations. Bill is on the Board of Directors of Educating Young Minds after school program with the mission to help inner city youth in the United States excel in school and life. He is also extensively involved with the United Nations UNAIDS mission to eliminate AIDS globally.

As film history has proven, Bill Duke welcomes the challenges of making films with a voice that needs to be heard by the world.


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