Danny Glover (Lethal Weapon, The Color Purple, etc) is a constant feature now at African film festivals and entertainment events.
He says his mission is to collaborate with African filmmakers, find funding for African films and expand their audience base beyond the circles of Africans and the black diaspora.
"Ive done 20 films with African filmmakers," he says at the 3rd World Festival of Black Arts and Cultures going on in Dakar, Senegal.
But, he says it hasn't been easy. "People imagine that I have the sort of money to produce films, but I don't," he says. "What I do is try to raise money to produce them. I want to be able to say, â€˜Danny Glover presents this, Danny Glover presents that'. But, when I talk to people who can put up money for the film, they say to me, â€˜Okay, you want to make this movie, fine, but, who's gonna see it?'"
His passion for his cause, he says, derives from his education growing up, from the movies he saw, from the books he read and they all made him want to understand where he is coming from. He talks about the influence of African political figures, especially those who fought for the freedom of Africa, such as Kwame Nkrumah, SÃ©kou TourÃ© and Nelson Mandela and the writings of such African authors as Chinua Achebe.
"If you don't connect with Achebe, for instance," he says, "What's going to happen to you?"
In the past few years, Glover has been doing the rounds of such festivals and awards as AMAA in Nigeria, FESPACO in Burkina Faso and others in South Africa.