Breaking The Chains Film Festival

Breaking The Chains Film Festival is a programme of screenings to observe the annual African Holocaust Remembrance Day held on 23 August. This date commemorates an uprising of enslaved Africans on the island of Saint Domingue (modern day Haiti) in 1791.

The screenings will highlight the hidden history and legacy of the enslavement of African people through our Maangamizi and the legacy of the enslavement period on Africa and the Diaspora. The word "Maangamizi" is a Swahili term which speaks to the intentionality of the African holocaust of chattel, colonial and neo-colonial enslavement.

The film festival will feature a mixture of feature films and documentaries. We will incorporate presentations and facilitate engaging post film discussions with audience members. 

Friday 12th August 2016North London Premiere: Nanny: Legendary Maroon Chieftainess (U)'@ Bernie Grant Centre, Tottenham


Conceived by Jamaican-born, New Jersey-based filmmaker, Roy T. Anderson, and history professor, Harcourt T. Fuller, PhD, Queen Nanny: Legendary Maroon Chieftainess, a one-hour documentary-film, unearths and examine the mysterious figure that is Nanny of the Maroons; Jamaica's sole female National Hero, and one of the most celebrated, but least recognized heroines in the resistance history of the New World.Queen Nanny documents the struggle for freedom by the Jamaican Maroons, led by the indomitable 18th century military genius, Nanny of the Maroons. A spiritual leader, skilled in the use of herbs and guerilla warfare tactics, from her mountain stronghold at the source of the Stony River in the majestic Blue Mountains, she directed the warfare that effectively neutralized the vaunted British firepower. 

Following on the heels of Akwantu: the Journey (Action 4 Reel Flimworks, 2012), Anderson's award-winning film on the history of the Jamaican Maroons, Queen Nanny expands on the story of the New World's first successful freedom fighters by shedding light on to one of the leading figures in that struggle.

Friday 19th August 2016 – Yuremein and The Garifuna Journey @ Bernie Grant Centre, Tottenham

YURUMEIN (Homeland): Resistance, Rupture and Repair; the Caribs of St. Vincent in the Caribbean.


YURUMEIN (Homeland) is a documentary film which recounts the painful past of the Caribs on the island of St. Vincent in the Caribbean, their extermination at the hands of the British 200+ years ago, the decimation of their culture on the island, and their exile to Central America where much of that culture survived, even thrived. YURUMEIN (your -o- main) also explores what few cultural remnants of the Caribs, also known as Garifuna, still exist on St. Vincent and the beginnings of a movement to teach and revitalize Garifuna language, music and dance, and ritual to younger generations of Garifuna/ Caribs on St. Vincent

The Garifuna Journey

A first voice testimony celebrating the resiliency of the Garifuna people and their traditions. Shot entirely in Belize, the filmmakers worked closely with Garifuna tradition bearers, anthropologists and cultural activists during the research, scripting, production and editing phases of this project. The documentary resulting from this "outsider and insider" collaboration is the first of its kind, one that captures the triumph of spirit of the Garifuna people.

Descendants of African and Carib-Indian ancestors, the Garifuna fought to maintain their homeland and resisted slavery. For this love of freedom, they were exiled by the British in 1797. Despite exile and subsequent Diaspora, their traditional culture survives today. It is a little known story that deserves its place in the annals of the African Diaspora. In authentic Garifuna voices, this documentary presents the history, the language, food, music, dance and spirituality of the Garifuna culture. It is a celebratory documentary, with engaging scenes of fishing, cooking, dancing, cassava preparation, thatching a temple, spiritual ritual, ritual music and dance all demonstrating the Garifuna link to the Carib-African past.

In May of 2001, the United Nations awarded the Garifuna community the title: Proclamation of Masterpieces of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.

Friday 26th August 2016 - They Are We @ Bernie Grant Centre, Tottenham


THEY ARE WE is the story of a remarkable reunion, 170 or so years after a family was driven apart by the ravages of the transatlantic slave trade.

In Central Cuba, proud members of the Gangá-Longobá, a small Afro-Cuban ethnic group, have kept their unique heritage alive. Incredibly, through decades of brutal enslavement, independence wars, and then the denying of all religions after the revolution, they have retained a collection of distinct songs and dances that one of their ancestors brought from Africa as a slave. Each December 17th they still perform them at the San Lazaro ceremony.

After a chance discovery while working in West Africa, director Emma Christopher spent two years showing a film of the Gangá-Longobá songs and dances to several thousand people across Sierra Leone. Eventually, in an isolated village with no road access, one man looked at another in joy and wonder as he watched a recording of the Gangá-Longobá songs and said, “THEY ARE WE!” Then the villagers joined in with others of the Gangá-Longobá songs, still recognizing them clearly despite all the years of separation.

Returning to Cuba, Emma showed her findings to the Gangá-Longobá. “We are not so alone anymore”, said one of their number, woodcarver and artist Alfredo Duquesne. Later he would say that knowing where he came from “is divine.”

In early 2013, after the law changed allowing them to freely leave Cuba, a trip was at last made to visit Sierra Leone. It turned into a remarkable celebration, a rare recognition of the tenacity and resolve of one young girl who once made the awful journey from Africa to Cuba, but never let her memories of home die.

THEY ARE WE tells the story of the Gangá-Longobá and of the village their ancestor called home.

It is the story of how, just very occasionally, a family separated by the slave trade can reunite for the good of all.


Stories of Our Lives

On the 5th March 2016 Legacy Film will be bringing ‘Stories of Our Lives’ (Kenya/2014/ Dir: Jim Chuchu) to the screen at Bernie Grants Arts Centre. 

This film anthology began as a result of The Nest Collective collecting and archiving the stories of persons identifying as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and intersex from across Kenya. After touring and collecting hundreds of vivid, compelling stories, they decided to turn some of these stories into short films. Using themselves as crew, and after turning some of the stories they gathered into scripts, they set about shooting the stories across the course of 8 months. Banned in Kenya, the making of these beautifully bold vignettes has proved to be an undertaking of activism in its own right.

Legacy Film came into being back at the end of 2009, beginning of 2010 as a Brighton (UK) based film festival. I, Paul Jackson was volunteering with a group of other collaborators to produce a set of arts based activities for Brighton Black History Month 2010 & 2011. A large part of the collaboration had been about creating things that could be a lasting legacy in the city. Recognising the major shortfall of film in the UK representing the African and Caribbean diaspora, and that the only way to consume this was either Video on Demand or excursions up to London, Legacy Film Festival was born with a view to bringing some of this content to Brighton audiences.

As parents, Myself and Althea Wolfe knew each other through a local community group for black and mixed parentage families. Althea had provided me with much advice around the first Legacy Film Festival, and having previously organised events and film screenings in the city in 2006, the two of us decided to join forces, setting up Legacy Film as a Community Interest Company.

By 2013, along with the change in government and the disbanding of the UK Film Council, Legacy Film recognised the need to move forward and that regular film screenings/events were the way to go. Althea and I were joined by Issey Osman in 2013 and ever since the 3 of us have been exhibiting films and providing platforms for those of the African Caribbean diaspora, both in front and behind the camera. In March 2014, despite having produced a number of cinema screenings, but feeling that knocking on doors was not proving as lucrative as it should, Legacy Film set up Pop Up screenings across Brighton & Hove. It has so far proved the most liberating decision we’ve made, and by far the best at reaching the audiences and people we want to reach.

In 2014, we ran an exciting project called ‘Who is Oscar?’ Screening a 1920 B&W film by African American Oscar Micheaux and commissioning Hove based Tanzanian musician Saidi Kanda to make a live soundtrack to the film. This proved a huge success and was toured across the South East region, including Brighton, Hastings, Southampton and also at the Rich Mix in East London. The resulting short documentary, made by Cathy Hassan of Burrogrande Productions, about Saidi Kanda was screened last year on the BBC Community Channel.

Legacy Film continue to build relationships and produce work with community, business and arts partners and are currently in the process of fundraising for a project placing Black female artists and programmers in the limelight.


For tickets please visit our website:, Eventbrite, or contact our box office via email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Tel: 020 8365 5450

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Exclusive preview of the film CAPTIVE

Bernie Grant Arts Centre is thrilled to announce an exclusive pre general release screening of CAPTIVE followed by Q&A discussion with one of its stars, David Oyelowo.

Paramount Pictures present CAPTIVE, produced by starring David Oyelowo, which recounts the true story of how, in April 2005, Ashley Smith (Kate Mara) talked her way out of a nightmare hostage scenario after reading Rick Warren's 'The Purpose Driven Life' to her captor Brian Nichols (David Oyelowo); eventually telling him that maybe his 'purpose' was to 'go to prison and share the Word of God with all the people in there'

Don't miss out this exclusive preview of the film CAPTIVE on the 24th September at 7pm. Tickets only £20. More information here.  


Paul's Square Naming Ceremony

There was a huge turnout on Friday at a ceremony to name a Tottenham square after the late Paul Head, formerly Principal of the College of Haringey Enfield & North East London. Colleagues from the College, from the Council, from the Metropolitan Police, members of the House of Lords and from the House of Commons joined his friends and family in a moving ceremony at the Bernie Grant Arts Centre, of which he had been the founding Chairman since 2004 until his early death last year at the ago of 54. Find out more below. 

Press Release-PaulsSquare 


Prev Next

Stories of Our Lives


On the 5th March 2016 Legacy Film will be bringing ‘Stories of Our Lives’ (Kenya/2014/ Dir: Jim Chuc...

Paul's Square Naming Ceremony


There was a huge turnout on Friday at a ceremony to name a Tottenham square after the late Paul Head...

Exclusive preview of the film CAPTIVE


Bernie Grant Arts Centre is thrilled to announce an exclusive pre general release screening of CAPTI...

Breaking The Chains Film Festival


Breaking The Chains Film Festival is a programme of screenings to observe the annual African Holocau...


BGACentre RT @LondonSymphFilm: TOMORROW, on 18/11/17, we return to @BGACentre in #Tottenham, #NorthLondon #N15. Tickets: #Lon
BGACentre Tonight in the Cinema Lounge we're showing The Music Room, Satyajit Ray's tale of the downfall of a wealthy Bengali…

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