ASU alumnus wins Emmy for short film

MONTGOMERY, AL - ASU alumnus Dr. Omowale Akintunde (2004) recently won an Emmy Award for his short film, "An Inaugural Ride to Freedom."

Dr. Omowale Akintunde's has held numerous roles throughout his career as an educator, writer and public speaker.

Now, the Alabama State University alumnus can add Emmy Award-winning film director to his list of credentials.

Akintunde, the department chair of Black Studies at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, was recently awarded a 2010 Emmy Award for his short film, "An Inaugural Ride to Freedom."

The hour-long documentary shows how members of the Black Studies Department, students and members of the community traveled to Washington, D.C., for the inauguration of President Barack Obama.

Akintunde said he is "floating on cloud nine" after receiving the Emmy, but he is eager to continue directing. His most recent film, titled "Wigger," premiered April 19 in Omaha, Neb., and is in negotiation to be a full-length movie set for nationwide release.

"Don't be misled by the title, this film examines the aspects of race, class, gender, white privilege and institutionalized bias," Akintunde said.

Filmed in Omaha, "Wigger" tackles relevant issues that plague white and black Americans.

"The film gives a positive impersonation of African-Americans and makes clear the struggles as a people how we continue to be resilient even when faced with contemporary racism," Akintunde said.

"Wigger" showcases an all-star cast, including, Meshach Taylor ("Designing Women") and Anna Maria Horsford ("Friday," "Amen").
Some of Akintunde's other film credits include: "Communion" and "Mama 'n 'Em," which was selected for the prestigious Hollywood Black Filmmaker Festival. Akintunde also is the author of two books, Multiculturalism and Teacher Education Experience, and a children's book, titled The Adventures of Darrell and the Invincible Man.

He earned his Bachelor of Science and Master of Music Education degrees from ASU. He acknowledges that it was at the University that he received his first foundations.

"ASU played a vital role in my career choices," he said.  "They helped shape who I am today."

Akintunde earned his doctoral degree in curriculum and instruction and African-American studies from the University of Missouri. He also is a graduate of the New York Film Academy.

For more information about Dr. Omowale Akintunde and his films, "An Inaugural Ride to Freedom" and "Wigger," visit