<
>

Dallas Film Festival has a Mavs connection

Wednesday is a busy night on the Dallas basketball calendar with the Mavericks playing host to Denver and the D-League’s Texas Legends venturing into the playoffs for the first time in franchise history, but there’s more hoops to be found at the Dallas Film Festival as an early evening appetizer for either game.

New York-based filmmaker Anne Buford’s documentary “ELEVATE” -- which follows the journey of four West African teenagers who leave home for American prep schools through a program founded by former Mavericks director of scouting Amadou Fall – will be screened Wednesday at 5 p.m. at the Landmarks Magnolia Theatre.

It is the second local screening of “ELEVATE,” which was filmed over four years to follow the foursome from Fall’s native Senegal as they moved to the United States as part of the “SEEDS” program (Sports for Education and Economic Development in Senegal) in hopes of landing college scholarships and perhaps even playing their way on the NBA’s radar.

Fall spent more than a decade in the Mavericks’ front office after his 1998 arrival, ultimately rising to director of player personnel and vice president of international affairs, before accepting a job last year in the NBA’s new South Africa office in Johannesburg as vice president of development. A handful of SEEDS alumni are projected next fall to either be starting or playing significant minutes for schools such as Washington, Syracuse, Virginia, Alabama and Louisville.

Buford is the sister of San Antonio Spurs president and general manager R.C. Buford.

More information on the documentary can be found at elevatethemovie.com or via its Twitter feed (@elevatemovie). Click here to visit the films page at the Dallas Film Festival.