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ImageNation and SummerStage Screens Time Is Illmatic, Had Crowds Comin’ Out in Queensbridge

Last year the critically-acclaimed documentary Time Is Illmatic debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival at a gathering of dignitaries in music, television and film.

Last year the critically-acclaimed documentary Time Is Illmatic debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival at a gathering of dignitaries in music, television and film. Last weekend it was screened in the view of neighborhood families and friends from Queensbridge, and across the map. It was all apart of Image Nation and SummerStage’s ongoing summer partnership as part of the Outdoors Festival, this being its 13th year.  For over a decade it has treated New York audiences to the very best in music and film from across the African Diaspora. Last weekend joyful blend of entertainment negritude welcomed legendary producer, DJ, emcee and comic book aficionado Pete Rock into its pantheon of great acts in the history of the ImageNation Outdoor Festival prior to the airing of Time Is Illmatic-in the meantime he moved the crowd with the soulfulest selection of Hip-Hop and jazz-infused tunes. .This is the 

While the joint was jumping, The Shadow League spoke with ImageNation co-founder Moikgantsi Kgama about the significance of screening the film recollection of the life of an all-time great musician of the magnitude of one Nasir Jones, and her fundraising efforts for Soul Cinema Cafe in Harlem.. I also got a chance to speak on camera with Pete Rock about the significance of his music an approximate date for the release of Soul Survivor 3, and more.  

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I also spoke with the film’s director One 9. He producer Erik Parker were in attendance, along with ImageNation co-founder Gregory Gates-whole also served as co-coordinator for the affair for the evening thus was unavailable for this story due to his responsibilities on the technical side of things.

Here’s what One 9 had to say about how TIme Is Illmatic, the significance of screening the film in Nas’ hometown. Also, check out the video interviews.  

“It actually started in 2004. My partner and fellow producer Erik Parker was a writer for Vibe magazine. He reached out to me to do a story on the 10 year anniversary of Nas Illmatic. We decided to do this out of pocket. So, we went to Nas fathers house and we did a four hour interview with him. It was at that moment that we caught the attention of the Jones family. Then we realized we had a much bigger story.  We sent Nas a rough trailer and he said to keep going. So, we kept sending trailers out and got a grant from the Ford Foundation.


“Its just amazing having it here in Queensbridge,” he added. “We screened it before indoors in Queensbridge, but to have it out here is always incredible. Nas couldnt be there the first time because he was touring , but his brother Jungle was there, Roxanne Shante, and his father was there too.


“He said that it was a very special thing to have it screen here in Queensbridge for the people he grew up with.”

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Also, keep an eye out for more exclusive behind the scenes video of ImageNation and SummerStage at the 4th Annual Soul Train Tribute at Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem when the audience will enjoy Mr. Dynamite: The Rise of James Brown. This edition will be aired in association with Injoy Enterprises and the Reel Harlem Film Festival.


Ricardo A Hazell has served as Senior Contributor with The Shadow League since coming to the company in 2013. His byline has appeared in the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the South China Sea Post, the Root and many other publications. At TSL he is charged with exploring re black cultural angles of where they intersect with the mainstream.