Founder of the political Hip-Hop group The Coup, Boots Riley is a musician, rapper, writer and activist, whose feature film directorial and screenwriting debut — 2018’s celebrated Sorry to Bother You — received the award for Best First Feature at the 2019 Independent Spirit Awards (amongst several other accolades and recognitions).
"[A] reflection of the insane times we live in." — Salon Magazine
"This bold new film not only shatters comedy's cold streak, but also serves as a powerful reminder of the vitality of the genre as both social commentary and shared experience.
— The Observer
“[O]ne of the best anti-capitalist films in recent memory.” — Jacobian Magazine
Boots’ activism, which invariably espouses a pro-labour position, remains front-and-centre in all his work. Considered by some as an early frontrunner for Best Original Screenplay at the 2019 Academy Awards, Riley himself was nominated this year by the Director’s Guild of America for Outstanding Directorial Achievement (First-Time Feature Film), while Sorry to Bother You received two 2019 Critics Choice Award nominations for Best Actor (Comedy) and Best Film (Comedy).
CCPA-MB's May 11, 2019 event will include a Q and A with Canadian black feminist writer Robyn Maynard. Activist, educator and author, Maynard’s most recent, best-selling book is entitled, Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada from Slavery to the Present (Fernwood, 2017).
May 2019 marks the 100th anniversary of the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike, in which 30,000 Winnipeggers rose to demand: the right to collectively bargain; the establishment of a living wage; and the protection of workers’ rights, altogether, which Riley’s talk will celebrate! Indeed, Riley remains one of the leading artists of our time, whose work and activism meaningfully reflects today's need for continued and robust collective labour supports — this, alongside organized resistance to worker-exploitation.
A portion of evening proceeds from May 11th’s event will be shared with Fight for $15 and Fairness Manitoba: a local group working to advance fair and progressive living wages and the rights of precarious workers.