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Cheryl Boone Isaacs and Cameron Bailey's New Roles in the Film Industry

Two of the film world's most influential figures, Cheryl Boone Isaacs and Cameron Bailey, have been promoted to new roles in the industry.

CHERYL BOONE ISAACS, Founding Director of the Sidney Poitier New American Film School

Cheryl Boone Isaacs, who previously served as the first Black President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), the organization that hosts the Oscars, has been named founding director of the newly established, three-campus Sidney Poitier New American Film School at Arizona State University. She starts in the position on January 1st, 2022. She plans to lead from the ASU California Center in Los Angeles as well as from Tempe and Mesa, where the state-of-the-art 118,000-square foot campus is located. “Cheryl Boone Isaacs has built her extraordinary career championing — and exemplifying — two of the primary things the Sidney Poitier New American Film School stands for: inclusion and excellence,” said Steven J. Tepper, dean of the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at ASU. 

Ms. Boone Isaacs' appointment also honors her late brother, Ashley Boone, who was a pioneer in the film industry for African Americans. He worked as a junior film publicist for the 1963 picture that earned Mr. Poitier his historic Best Actor Oscar for "Lilies of the Field." Ashley later worked for Poitier’s production company before becoming the President of Distribution and Marketing at 20th Century Fox in 1972. “Sidney Poitier — the man, the icon, the legend — is my north star who exemplifies determination, passion, professionalism and excellence,” said Cheryl Boone Isaacs. “I am honored to be part of his legacy and to impart his ethos to future generations of storytellers.”

Ms. Boone Isaacs also serves as a Co-Chair of the EntertainmentMakers Committee of HistoryMakers, the nation's largest African-American video and oral history archive and depository. It's one of a kind collection is housed permanently in the Library of Congress. 

CAMERON BAILEY, CEO of the Toronto International Film Festival

Cameron Bailey, the former Co-Director of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) was just appointed to the role of TIFF's CEO by TIFF's Board of Directors. The announcement comes as TIFF Bell Lightbox has recently reopened its doors and as the organization begins to plan for next year's festival. "As an industry leader in the film and entertainment landscape and in light of his 25 years with the organization, Bailey has been instrumental in growing and cultivating TIFF’s loyal audiences and ensuring the festival is an essential stop for filmmakers, industry professionals, and journalists from around the world," they said.

“TIFF’s mission to ‘transform the way people see the world through film’ is my mission as well,” said Bailey. “I believe the moving image has a unique power to tap into our deepest emotions, and shift the way we view our world and each other. It’s both a joy and an enormous responsibility to lead our passionate, committed TIFF team as we connect people and communities through film. I’m indebted to TIFF’s founders and to each of TIFF’s previous leaders for building an organization dedicated to making positive change in the world for filmgoers, filmmakers, and all the professionals who make movies matter.”

Mr. Bailey is also among the Canadians invited this year to be a member-at-large of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The Toronto International Film Festival is one of the world's most influential festivals. This site's co-founder, Roger Ebert, dubbed it in 2002 the most important film festival in the world, after Cannes.

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