Fabienne Colas, our founding president, moved to Montreal around 2004. It didn’t take her long to become aware of how little space there was for artists from visible minorities (especially from the black communities). This is what propelled the creation of the Fabienne Colas Foundation, a foundation that aims to give a voice and a window to people who, otherwise, would never be seen or heard. Since then, Fabienne’s mission has been to continue to create platforms that show a diversity of voices, faces and points of view. Fabienne, as well as the Foundation’s co-founders, Réal Barnabé and Emile Castonguay, believe in the importance of giving back to their community whenever they can.


March :Creation of the “Youth and Diversity” Program with the “Being Black in Montreal” pilot project that offers audiovisual training and mentorship to aspiring young filmmakers from black communities.

September :The Montreal International Black Film Festival celebrates its 10th anniversary with a bang with a new format, new activities (Black Market, etc.) and famous director Spike Lee. Creation of the Pioneer Award presented to Oscar-nominated director Spike Lee (with special guest P.K. Subban,NHL hockey player – Montreal Canadiens). Creation of the Montreal International Black Film Festival’s “Black Market“, the first market of its kind in Canada, which aims to equip professionals working in the independent film industry—namely those from black communities—with the tools they need to succeed, and to encourage business partnerships.

February : Creation of the Toronto Black Film Festival presented by Global Toronto as part of the Black History Month celebrations. The Fabienne Colas Foundation expands its actions in Canada.

July : The Centre des Viandes F. Iasenza becomes the official presenter of the Festival Haïti en Folie (Haiti on Fire).

September : Creation of the Vanguard Award presented to Oscar-nominated director Kim Nguyen for his film Rebelle; creation of the Social Impact Award presented to activist Josué Lajeunesse by the Fondation Paul Gérin-Lajoie; tribute to Hollywood legend and activist Danny Glover who receives the 2013 Humanitarian Award. Senegalese director Moussa Touré is the Honorary President of the 2013 edition of the MIBFF.

February : Creation of the multidisciplinary festival Fade to Black, presented by TD Bank, celebrating Black History Month in Montreal.

September : Creation of the Humanitarian Award presented to legendary actor, singer and activist Harry Belafonte. Creation of the Career Achievement Award presented to entrepreneur and best-selling author Stedman Graham. Star television host Sonia Benezerabecomes the spokesperson for the 2012 edition of the MIBFF.

September : Creation of the Lifetime Achievement Award presented for the first time to legendary Malian filmmaker Souleymane Cissé at the Montreal International Black Film Festival (MIBFF). The award was presented by Dany Laferrière. Francine Grimaldi becomes the ambassador of the MIBFF and singer Charles Biddle Jr. is the spokesperson for the 2011 edition of the festival.

November : Tribute to and tour by author Dany Laferrière in Haiti as part of the Quebecois Film Festival in Haiti.

July : The Festival Haïti en Folie (Haiti on Fire) launches its “Un goût d’Haïti ” (a taste of Haiti).

September : Global Montreal becomes the official presenter of the Montreal International Black Film Festival.

March : The Fabienne Colas Foundation extends its actions internationally with the creation of the Quebecois Film Festival in Haiti as part of Journée international de la francophonie (international Francophonie day).

May : Creation of the Festival Ririri in Montreal starring black comedic artists.

July : Creation of the Festival Dansomania presented as part of the Week-ends du monde at Jean-Drapeau Park in Montreal.

September : The Montreal International Haitian Film Festival becomes the Montreal International Black Film Festival (MIBFF). Author Dany Laferrière, now a member of the Académie française (French academy), is honoured.

September : Retrospective on VOODOO: 25 films, exhibition and international conference in Montreal.

2007

July : Creation of the Festival Haïti en Folie (Haiti on Fire) presented by Loto-Québec celebrating Haitian culture in Montreal at Théâtre de Verdure in Montreal’s Lafontaine Park.

Well-known Montreal cultural columnist Francine Grimaldi becomes the spokesperson for Fabienne Colas Foundation events.

Septembre : Major event in Montreal on MODERN-DAY SLAVERY in the Dominican Republic through the experiences of Haitian Bracéros: films, exhibition and symposium.


2006

February : Official incorporation of the Fabienne Colas Foundation and 1st outdoor screening of a film in Alexis-Carrel Park in Rivière-des-Prairies, Montreal.

September : The Montreal International Haitian Film Festival becomes competitive and wins awards.


2005

September : The Fabienne Colas Foundation’s first event, the screening of the film “Profonds Regrets” by Mora Junior Etienne, is a success.

December : Creation of the 1st edition of the Haitian Film Festival in Montreal: “A Weekend of Haitian Cinema in Montreal,” 3 films in 3 days that drew some 3,000 people to Salle Emile Legault at CEGEP St-Laurent in Montreal.

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