Lee Daniels is Directing a New Documentary on the Apollo Theater

By Sameer Rao Jan 29, 2016

Lee Daniels is directing a documentary about the history of Harlem’s famed Apollo Theater, and he’s looking for your help. 

The "Empire" creator was announced as director of "The Apollo Film Project" yesterday (January 28), according to The Hollywood Reporter. The film is being made in collaboration with the Apollo and White Horse Pictures.

The Apollo Theater is immortalized in history. It was conceived during the Harlem Renaissance and featured artists as disparate as Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin and Jimi Hendrix. Its Wednesday amateur night remains a launchpad for legions of artists, and after more than 80 years, the theater continues to host more than 100 performances annually. 

Daniels and Apollo Theater president-CEO Jonelle Procope are reaching out to the public via the film’s website, asking anyone with archival footage or memorabilia from the theater’s and neighborhood’s history to submit it to the project. The two said the following in a joint statement on the website:

We are asking members of the community who have been to the Apollo, who may have parents or grandparents or other family members or friends who have done so, to help us find any material—audience footage, photographs, or other memories that we can use in our documentary film. We have established a website for anyone who wants to submit. We will, of course, respect everybody’s ownership of their property.

(H/t The Hollywood Reporter