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Black Market Green Director Turns 50th into Black Tie Fundraiser To Raise Finishing Funds for Documentary

Black Market Green Black Tie Fundraiser & Birthday Celebration Invitation

Legendary Cecil’s Steakhouse in Harlem will host a three-course dinner, live performances, gifting suite, and sneak peek of the Black Market Green documentary.

I'm excited to be on the verge of achieving the one thing I regretted five years ago - not having completed a feature film in my lifetime.”
— Ukachi Arinzeh, Director
NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, March 10, 2022 / -- On March 23, 2022, filmmaker Ukachi Arinzeh celebrates his fiftieth birthday with a film completion fundraiser at the world-famous Cecil’s Steakhouse in Harlem, NY. The goal of the fundraiser is to raise $50,000 to cover post-production costs to complete Arinzeh’s first full-length documentary, Black Market Green: The Whitewashing Of The Marijuana Industry, which wraps production this month. "Cecil's was a natural choice to hold our event, since jazz music and dancing were two of the original reasons for marijuana's prohibition. Harlem was one of the communities that was hit the hardest by the war on drugs. So it just felt right to do it here." said Stephen Chukumba, the film's executive producer and the event's emcee.

Black Market Green (BMG) examines the historical precedent of the war on drugs, the subsequent mass incarceration of Black and Brown people, and the current attempts to address the disproportionate and devastating impacts of the war on drugs to communities of color, through marijuana legalization. The film highlights the legislation’s sponsors, community activists, and many of the proponents of cannabis legalization through a series of interviews, dramatized reenactments, and follows three legacy dealers pursuing opportunities in the new legal green market.

Mr. Arinzeh has taken his 50th birthday, a major life milestone, and turned it into a fundraiser to help his project see completion. Diagnosed with cancer five years ago, Arinzeh didn't know whether he would live to see fifty. "I'm excited to be on the verge of achieving the one regret I had five years ago - not having completed a feature film in my lifetime." He decided to use his birthday as an excuse to get his friends to help him complete his film. "Why not celebrate this milestone with the people I love, who will help me get this film across the finish line?"

The Black Tie Gala is a ticketed event, with ticket prices ranging from $50 for the after-party-only ticket to the $250 VIP tix. Tickets can be purchased from and on EventBrite under "Black Market Green: Post-Production Fundraiser". Ticketed guests will be treated to a cocktail hour, three-course dinner, signature drinks, live entertainment, and CannaSwag™ bags filled with marijuana themed goodies.

Beyond raising completion funds, Arinzeh and Chukumba hope to show independent filmmakers creative ways to finance independent film projects like their documentary. "We learned a lot about leveraging personal networks and the power of asking people to help. March 23rd will be as much about celebrating my 50th, as it will be about the people sharing that moment with me." said Arinzeh.


Black Market Green LLC is a production company established in 2021 to produce Black Market Green: The Whitewashing of the Marijuana Industry. The film’s director, Ukachi Arinzeh, has written and directed two previous films, both shorts, which addressed critical social issues. He addressed the issue of youth homelessness with “Searching for the Promised Land” (originally entitled “Survival Sex”), his first documentary in 2017. His second movie “The Inconvenience Of Being Black”, explored “driving while Black,” in 2020. Black Market Green is Arinzeh and Chukumba's third project together.

To become a sponsor or for ticket inquiries please contact Stephen Chukumba at (718) 308-5730 or Richard Burroughs at (718) 249-3054.

Stephen Chukumba
Black Market Green LLC
+1 718-308-5730
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