6 September, 2017
Flow and CaribbeanTales Present World Premiere of Caribbean Television Pilots at CaribbeanTales International Film Festival 2017
Three new, original Caribbean TV pilots will have their world premiere screenings at the 12th CaribbeanTales International Film Festival (CTFF)1 in Toronto, Canada, this September. BattleDream Chronicles2, HEAT3, and CaribbeanGrlNYC4 are the result of an ongoing partnership between the CaribbeanTales Media Group, the world’s largest distributor of Caribbean audio-visual content, and Flow, the Caribbean’s leading telecoms and media content provider.
Produced by CaribbeanTales for Flow, the three pilots will air exclusively on the Company’s flagship entertainment network, Flow 1, later this year across the Caribbean. The pilots focus on Caribbean themed content: BattleDream Chronicles is the Region’s first Afro-futurist Animation series created by director, producer and writer Alain Bidard; HEAT3 is a steamy Bajan drama written and directed by internationally acclaimed Barbadian/British director and writer Menelik Shabazz; while CaribbeanGrlNYC4 by Guadeloupean creator and director Mariette Monpierre, -- best known for her award-winning 2011 film, Elza -- is a female-driven sitcom set in the Big Apple.
All three directors are alumni of the renowned CaribbeanTales Incubator Program (CTI), which is now in its eighth year. From its inception, the CTI has been a training and development platform and launch pad for over eighty Caribbean-themed projects and producers. And since last year, the CTI has partnered with Flow to produce three (3) original series Pilots a year and develop homegrown content for Caribbean audiences.
“We are rewriting the script on support for local and regional content,” said John Reid, CEO of Cable & Wireless, operator of Flow and lead sponsor of the CTFF and CTI. “The Caribbean has always had talented filmmakers; what it has lacked is a support system that enables skills development, assistance in production and distribution, and ultimately the opportunity to monetize content. Through our partnership with CaribbeanTales, we are changing this, helping to transform the Caribbean film industry and showcase its talent to the world,” he said.
“C&W Communications has a vested interest in contributing to the development of the region’s audio-visual industry as not only are we deeply rooted in the Caribbean, we are committed to ensuring our customers have access to market-leading content. We are proud of what has been achieved so far and excited to bring all this talent to the global stage and to the Caribbean,” Reid added.
BattleDream Chronicles will be the first pilot to make its world debut on September 6, 2017 at the Gala Opening of CTFF2017. The pilot features legendary St. Lucian actor, Joseph Marcell, best known for his role as Geoffrey the Butler in “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air”; Barbadian Queen of SOCA, artiste Alison Hinds; Sheldon Sheperd, star of the award-winning 2010 Jamaican drama, Better Mus’ Come; Leonie Forbes, Jamaica’s multi-award-winning actress and icon; Nickolai Salcedo, prominent Trinidadian actor and musician; and Guyana’s up-and-coming star, Nuriyyih Gerrard, in the show’s leading role.
HEAT will be screened on September 13 at the CTFF 2017 special Menelik Shabazz Tribute, sponsored by the Consulate General of Barbados, Toronto. The evening’s special guests will include Menelik Shabazz, and TIFF’s Artistic Director, Cameron Bailey.
And, on September 20, 2017 at CTFF2017’s CINEFAM: Women Creators of Colour Night, the spotlight will shine on women of colour directors, creators and actresses with the screening of CaribbeanGrlNYC.
1 The CTFF runs from September 6 – September 21, 2017 under the theme “Bringing the Caribbean to the World.”
2 BattleDream Chronicles – created by director, producer, writer Alain Bidard – is the Caribbean’s first animated TV series. It is set in an Afro-futuristic world where video games have become slave plantations. Syanna and her friends must learn to hack the system if they are to reclaim their freedom. Battledream boasts an international and pan-Caribbean star-studded cast including St. Lucian-born actor Joseph Marcell, best known for his role as Geoffrey in the Fresh Prince of Bel Air; Alison Hinds, Barbados’ Queen of Soca; Sheldon Sheperd, star of the award-winning 2010 Jamaican drama Better Mus’ Come; Leonie Forbes, Jamaica’s multi-award-winning actress and icon; Nickolai Salcedo, prominent Trinidadian actor and musician; and, in the show’s leading role, Guyana’s rising star Nuriyyih Gerrard.
3 HEAT is a Barbadian crime drama written and directed by internationally acclaimed Barbadian / British director and writer Menelik Shabazz (Burning An Illusion, Lover’s Rock). The steamy story of race and passion kicks off when a wealthy white businessman murders his wife’s Black lover. In the ensuing cover-up, the dead man’s wife discovers evidence that threatens to destroy this empire of lies. The sweltering series features Soca Queen Alison Hinds; DJ, radio personality and actor Kirk Brow; and other well-known Barbadian stage actors who are making their first big splash on the international screen, including Patrick Foster, Varia Williams and Andrew Pilgrim.
4 CaribbeanGrlNYC is a half-hour comedy about four women from different Caribbean islands trying to make it in New York. Creator and director Mariette Monpierre from Guadeloupe is best known for her award-winning 2011 film Elza, which won the prestigious NYT award. This show stars multi-award-winning New York based actress Jacinth Sutphin, best known for her leading role in internationally acclaimed drama Diary of a Badman, alongside Ya Ya Williams, Natalia Elizabeth and Katia Angers
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