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Joanne Burke is the director and producer of BlueLionFilm a company specialzing in cultural documentaries.

Joanne Burke 


Joanne Burke is a film and video director-producer with many years of high level experience. From the late 1960s to 1986, she was a top documentary film editor in New York City, with more than twenty long form documentaries for CBS, NBC, PBS, AND HBO, covering social, political and cultural themes to her credit.


Joanne was also the editor on "The Anderson Tapes" for Sidney Lument, and served as co-editor on "Gimma Shelter" , a film about The Rolling Stone, produced by Albert and David Maysles and Charlotte Zwerin.

David Burke is the writer and film director of BlueLionFilm

David Burke 

Writer and Film Maker

David Burke is a former television journalist with over twenty years of experience as a writer, producer, and film maker in New York City.

After moving to Paris with his wife Joanne in 1986, David has penned several travel books. His book, "Writers in Paris: Literary Lives in the City of Light", evolved into the highly praised David Burke's Writers in Paris Walking Tours, listed as one of Lonely Planet's top 10 literary walks  around the world.

Writer and Camerman

David has also collaborated with his wife Joanne on writing their hour-long documentary, Mary Lou Williams " Music on my Mind". It has been broadcasted on PBS, BET, CBC, ARTE, as well as other European stations. He also wrote and served as cameraman on a series of four documentaries about innovative women from Zimbabwe, Thailand, Guatemala, and Mali, distributed by WOMEN MAKE MOVIES in the U.S. 

The Burke's  focus on African American History in France began in 2012, when they created When African Americans Came To Paris, a groundbreaking series of six minidocumentaries about pioneering Black Americans from WEB Dubois, The Harlem Hellfighters to Henry O. Tanner. Two years later, they expanded the series with three longer films focussing on Josephine Baker, Sidney Bechet and Harlem Renaissance and Diaspora writers and intellectuals. The series received the award of Best Director from the prestigious Berlin Black International Cinema Film Festival in 2015.


Their comprehensive one-hour documentary, Paris Noir, African Americans In the City of Light was launched in 2016. It has been shown at many festivals including The March on Washington Film Festival and The Roxbury International Film Festival where it won the Henry Hampton Award for Excellence in Filmmaking. The film has been screened at many educational

institutions including the University of Texas Austin, Williams College and the University of Florida. It was also integrated into a special event screening at the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture, and shown at the Marie de Paris exhibition Génération Perdue.

Phlyssa Koshland is the Executive Producer for BlueLionFilm which specializes in documentaries on Black history and culture

Phlyssa Koshland Producer

Born in the USA but transplanted to Australia in 1975 and then to Paris in 1990, she now spends time in all three places, loving them all.


While her early influences were scientific, she discovered that

"problem solving" was just as important in sculpturing. She has spent the last 50 years creating a body of work about the human body and the human spirit. There is a strong sense of movement and energy in all her sculptures even the most contemplative ones. While exhibiting mainly in Australia, she has works in institutions and collections in the US, Europe and Japan.


Phlyssa got involved with film making late when she met Joanne, where she discovered the challenges and "problem solving" of film editing, "who knows what would have happened if I had discovered it earlier," she says. After working with Joanne on Paris Noir, she made the suggestion that they follow up with the story of the African American soldiers in France in Word War I. "We never looked back although we had no idea what we were getting into."

Julia Brown is consultant to BluelionFilm which specializes in documentaries on black history and culture.

Julia Browne


Founder -

 Walking The Spirit

In 1994, Julia Browne pioneered the first ever tours of Black Paris while studying under Sorbonne Emeritus Professor Michel Fabre, founder of the Centre For African American Studies at the Sorbonne Nouvelle.

Black Paris & Beyond

What started as a passion for sharing information turned into Walking The Spirit Tours, a series of tours which excite and educate travelers and locals about the little-known Black heritage that fill the cobblestone streets and

wrap around the famous City of Lights, Paris.

An award-wining broadcaster, author of the blog Spirit of Black Paris, and a captivating speaker, Julia gives lively multimedia presentations at cultural and educational institutions in Canada and the U.S. -  A 200 Year Affair-Black History in Paris and Connecting To Black Paris/France 

British-born, Canadian-raised, and French by affinity, Julia loved living in Paris and Aix-en-Provence with her young family for 15 years. Now a certified France Specialist, through Walking The Spirit Tours Julia offers full trip travel planning services, and organizes and escorts excursions that blend Black history and culture with the delights of French towns and villages.

Julia partnered with Blue Lion Film on this groundbreaking project as consultant, developer and distributor. It continues the mandate of Walking The Spirit Tours to ensure the knowledge of African American heritage in France is accessible and inspiring for all ages and backgrounds.

 Winner of Film Festival Awards

Bluelion film awards graph_edited_edited
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