CIFF47: PSQ March 22 – April 1, 2023 | Streams April 2 – April 9, 2023

Voodoo Macbeth

Year: 2020
Language: English
Run Time: 108 minutes

Voodoo Macbeth
Voodoo Macbeth
Voodoo Macbeth
Voodoo Macbeth

It’s October 1935. America is in the midst of The Great Depression, and millions of unemployed are struggling to survive. Still, Harlem’s Lafayette Theater continues operations and is the most active Negro Theater unit of the Federal Theater Project, a New Deal program funding live artist performance and designed to boost employment. Led by Rose McClendon and John Houseman, the company challenges conventional perspectives of Black theater by producing their first classical production. Houseman hires the inexperienced, boisterous, and arrogant 20-year-old Orson Welles to direct the first all-Black cast performing Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Welles, determined to create shockwaves with his first professional stage play, radically adapts Macbeth by shifting the setting from medieval Scotland to 19th century Haiti. Welles struggles to bring his career-launching vision to life while balancing an amateur cast, distressed marriage, political interference, and protests fueled by the skepticism of the Black community. Inspired by actual events, and created by a group of 8 writers and 10 directors who collaborated as students at the University of Southern California, VOODOO MACBETH tells the story of a long-forgotten Black theater landmark that launched a film legend’s directing career. — R.R.

CIFF45 Screenings

CIFF45 Streams On Demand

Thursday, April 08, 2021 at 11:00 AM -
Tuesday, April 20, 2021 at 11:59 PM

Streams Access: United States and US Territories
Accessibility (?)
Closed Captions: Yes
Audio Description: No
English Subtitles: No

Black Cinema
Film is Art
Teen-Friendly Films

American Independents Competition
Reel Women Direct Award for Excellence in Directing by a Woman
FilmSlam Student Choice Award for Best Feature


Dagmawi Abebe, Victor Alonso-Berbel, Roy Arwas, Hannah Bang, Christopher Beaton, Agazi Desta, Tiffany Kontoyiannis Guillen, Zoe Salnave, Ernesto Sandoval, Sabina Vajraca

Miles Alva, Jason Phillips, Xiaoyuan Xiao

Agazi Desta, Jennifer Frazin, Morgan Milender, Molly Miller, Amri Rigby, Joel David Santner, Erica Sutherland, Chris Tarricone

Bash Achkar

Takashi Uchida

Principal Cast
Jewell Wilson Bridges, Inger Tudor, Jeremy Tardy, June Schreiner, Daniel Kuhlman, Ashli Haynes, Wrekless Watson, Gary McDonald

Film Contact

Community Partners

Great Lakes Theater

Karamu House

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