Bash for Melvin Van Peebles takes place Aug. 21
Gotham’s Film Forum is throwing what is sure to be a badass 80th birthday bash for Melvin Van Peebles on Aug. 21.The event will feature numerous guests and clips from the pioneering hyphenate’s long career, which ignited with the 1971 release of his indie auteur effort “Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song.” Pic is credited with laying the foundation for the blaxploitation genre. The Film Forum presentation will also cover the helmer’s early experience as an Air Force pilot and his work beyond the film realm as a playwright, rapper, painter, sculptor and novelist. Van Peebles will be interviewed onstage by Jon Angio, director of “How to Eat Your Watermelon in White Company (and Enjoy It),” a 2005 docu on the helmer. Afterwards, the private birthday party will be held around the corner from Film Forum at City Winery, where Melvin Van Peebles wid Laxative, his latest band, is set to perform.