Paris Noir - African Americans in the City of Light

Paris Noir – African Americans in the City of Light + Q&A

classified 15

Black Paris: Josephine and Beyond


Please note: This was screened in July 2022

Joanne Burke
60 mins, 2017, USA
Primary language

For nearly a century, many African Americans travelled to Paris to find their identity away from the American racism that sought to erase it. 

Director Joanne Burke and associate producer Julia Browne explore the migration of pioneering African Americans to France, from dancer, singer and actress Josephine Baker and jazz musician Sidney Bechet to author and poet Richard Wright and cultural icon James Baldwin.

Weaving stories and themes from World War I, the Jazz Age of the 1920s up to the German occupation of WWII, Paris Noir offers thought-provoking storytelling that resonates in today's social and political climate.

Presented as part of Future City Film Festival which takes place biennially in the autumn but had to be postponed last year due to the pandemic. It will now run through 2022 as a series of special events with the support of BFI awarding funds from National Lottery.