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African American Films

Welcome to the African American Films Libguide. This guide will showcase various films staring African American actors and actresses. Click on the tabs across the top to learn more about films in different categories. To find specific films in our collection, search the TTC Library Catalog below.

Film Spotlight

The Color Purple

Set in the early 1900s, tells the story of Celie, a poor black Southern woman, whose friendship with two women helps her overcome the brutality of her father and husband.

Starring: Whoopi Goldberg, Danny Glover, Oprah Winfrey


About a young Thurgood Marshall, the first African-American Supreme Court Justice, as he battles through one of his career defining cases.

Cast includes: Chadwick Boseman, Sterling K. Brown, Josh Gad, Kate Hudson, Dan Stevens

A Raisin in the Sun

Film of the award-winning play about a struggling black family living on Chicago's South Side and the impact of an unexpected insurance bequest. Each family member sees the bequest as the means of realizing dreams and of escape from grinding frustrations.

CAST includes: Sidney Poitier and Ruby Dee

Hidden Figures

Based on the #1 New York Times bestseller The phenomenal true story of the black female mathematicians at NASA whose calculations helped fuel some of America's greatest achievements in space. Starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kirsten Dunst, and Kevin Costner. Before John Glenn orbited the earth, or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as "human computers" used pencils, slide rules and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space. Among these problem-solvers were a group of exceptionally talented African American women, some of the brightest minds of their generation.

Lee Daniels' The Butler

A butler tells the story of a White House who serves eight presidents over three decades. During his tenure as a butler at the White House, the civil rights movement, Vietnam, and other major events affect this man's life, family, and American society.

CAST includes: Forest Whitaker , Oprah Winfrey

12 Years a Slave

Based on the true story of Solomon Northup. It is 1841, and Northup, an accomplished, free citizen of New York, is kidnapped and sold into slavery. Stripped of his identity and deprived of all dignity, Northup is ultimately purchased by ruthless plantation owner Edwin Epps and must find the strength within to survive. Filled with powerful performances by an astonishing cast including Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, Benedict Cumberbatch, Brad Pitt, and newcomer Lupita Nyong'o, 12 Years a Slave is both an unflinching account of slavery in American history and a celebration of the indomitable power of hope.