Jamaican films to premiere at Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival

Kingston, Jamaica:  Films from Jamaica and the Diaspora will be in the spotlight during a special screening of Jamaican films at the Trinidad and Tobago Film Festival (TTFF), which will take place as part of the international multicultural festival – CARIFESTA. The films will be screened today, August 21, 2019 in Port of Spain.

Curated by the Jamaica Film and Television Association (JAFTA) and supported by JAMPRO, the JAFTA Block will feature six independently-produced short films - Unspoken directed by Danae Grandison and produced by Carleene Samuels; Girl on the Run directed by Pierce McLean and produced by Tiffany Lewis; Learning to Swim directed and produced by Krystal Dawkins; Jerk directed by Raine Allen-Miller and produced by Ellie Fry, and Sea People directed by Stacey-Ann Sutherland and produced by S’alfrico Watson-Grant.

This screening marks the growing talent that exists both locally and from the Jamaican diaspora, and showcases diverse stories highlighting a range of issues from mental breakdowns to autism. The JAFTA Block will be represented by Analisa Chapman, President of JAFTA, who will be promoting the island’s film industry at the festival.

Reflecting on the films to be shown at the event, Ms. Chapman said, “The films in this JAFTA Block segment demonstrate not only creative talent and social activism through filmmaking, but the diaspora element is an example of existing and potential avenues for both formal and informal co-productions and collaborations that can expand and improve the local and regional film industry.”

Increased success for Jamaica’s film industry

The TTFF screening comes on the heels of the recent announcement by Film Commissioner, Renee Robinson, that Jamaica’s film industry has earned a record J$2.3 billion in expenditure because of major films such as James Bond (Bond 25), The Swing of Things, Syn, and Running Bulls, and high-profile TV productions such as Top Boy and 60 Minutes. The earnings are up from $1.2 billion in 2017-18, representing a 97 per cent increase. 2,677 jobs were also generated by the local film industry for the 2018-19 financial year.

Ms. Robinson said that JAMPRO was excited to see the growth of the industry and the rise in Jamaica’s prominence in the regional film industry. She said, “Year after year we have demonstrated growth in the industry and also greater facilitation towards the exhibition of local content. With this year’s TTFF coinciding with CARIFESTA, we continue the work to deepen partnerships with film commissions and partners all across the Caribbean, to demonstrate the potential of regional collaboration. A door is opening for Caribbean content on the global marketplace, and as a region, we must position ourselves to step through.”

The Jamaica Promotions Corporation (JAMPRO)’s mission is to drive economic development through growth in investment and export. JAMPRO is an Agency of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries.


Other Jamaican films to be shown at TTFF CARIFESTA edition include Sugar Cane directed by Franklyn St. Juste, the Dudus saga documentary Last Street directed by Spanish filmmaker Amanda Sans, the animation Ms. Sugga directed by Mary Wells and produced by Pat Northover, and the Chris Browne directed feature film Ghett’a Life under the Jamaican classic segment.


Published Date: 
Wednesday, August 21, 2019
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