announcing the ttff/21 industry line-up

trinidad+tobago film festival is proud to announce the industry programme for this year’s edition! Award-winning filmmakers and creative minds from across the globe will highlight this year’s festival, providing knowledge and insights throughout numerous masterclasses, workshops, presentations, panels and talks. This year we will also include a special Info Session and a new discussion series entitled, Ask the Veterans, an open, all-access pass to drill experienced film industry professionals on all aspects of their work.

Online industry events will be free and live-streamed via the ttff Facebook page, YouTube channel and also the festival website. For workshops and masterclasses that will take place via Zoom, tickets must be paid for in full and in advance, and Zoom links will be sent in advance of event commencement. To buy tickets, scroll down to the events below for specific ticket links. They can also be purchased via bank transfer or in person at our office at 22 Jerningham Ave.

Please email Teneille at admin@filmco.org to register for any of the industry sessions, whether free or ticketed.

If you purchase three or more industry events simultaneously, you will be entitled to a discount of 30% off the total ticket price! *Note: this discount is not for FILMCO members, filmmakers with a film in the festival or students.

FILMCO members, filmmakers with a film in this year’s festival and students with valid photo IDs can receive a 50% discount on all workshops and paid masterclasses!

To sign up for multiple events, please click here.


ask the veterans


ask the veteran: composer, Miriam Cutler

Fri 24 Sept, 1.00pm-3.00pm (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: free of charge; early registration required
presented in partnership with the US Embassy, Port of Spain

Filmmakers tend to spend most of their time focusing on “film as a visual medium” but it’s just as important to remember that a powerful score can help to inspire the emotions that the creator wants their audience to experience. Incorporating this layer of storytelling into a film ultimately results in a more impactful outcome. In this open forum, audience members will have the opportunity to ask questions of veteran composer, Miriam Cutler. This is intended to be an introductory, general overview of the process of creating meaningful stories through music. Email us at admin@filmco.org to book your place.

Click here to view Miriam Cutler’s bio.

Click here to register.

ask the veteran: producer/ publicist, Kathleen McInnis

Mon 27 Sept, 3.00pm-4.30pm (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: free of charge; early registration required
presented in partnership with the US Embassy, Port of Spain

In this open forum, audience members will be given the In recent years, film festivals have become the go-to exhibition stop for independent filmmakers, many of whom would struggle to find distribution and audiences otherwise. But, with so many film festivals all over the world, and with clear hierarchies in the festival circuit, choosing which ones you should send your film to, and in what order, needs to be considered as part of an overarching strategy that can guide your decision making as you seek to release your film. In this open forum, audience members will have the opportunity to ask questions of veteran producer, Kathleen McInnis. This is intended to be an introductory, general overview, in which Kathleen will explain the importance of planning your festival strategy from the script development stages of a project. Email us at admin@filmco.org to book your place in this open class.

Click here to view Kathleen McInnis’ bio.

Click here to register.


masterclasses

directing the Caribbean narrative feature
with José María Cabral

Wed 22, Thurs 23, Fri 24 Sept, 1.00pm-2.30pm (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets:
TT$900/ US$133, click here to register; early registration required
brought to you with the support of FilmTT

Directing is an art, one that requires many skills. How does one direct and craft an enduring narrative, as a Caribbean filmmaker? An authentic Caribbean story that explores universal themes can be impactful to a global audience, but what is the most efficient way to tell it? Having a clear vision of the film you want to make, confidence in your voice as a storyteller and a thorough understanding of universal themes that will resonate with global audiences are all vital to telling a memorable story. 

In this three-part masterclass, Dominican José María Cabral, director of “Jaque Mate” (“Checkmate”) and “Carpinteros” (“Woodpeckers”), will take participants through the art and process of directing, from the perspective of a Caribbean storyteller working in the Caribbean space. He will delve into topics such as knowing your voice and how to develop your style as a director; understanding the stories you want to tell; evaluating a script; production design; cinematography; using the resources you have; collaborating with your team; and working with actors.

*Eligibility: participants must be practising filmmakers of narrative films (note: this is not an introductory course).
**Payment plans are available for this masterclass. Email Teneille at admin@filmco.org for more info.
Click here to buy your ticket.

Click here to view José María Cabral’s bio.

documentary editing with Carla Gutierrez

Sat 25 Sept, 1.00pm-3.30pm (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: TT$400/ US$59, click here to register; early registration required
brought to you with the support of FilmTT


Non-fiction filmmakers know that the documentary is often made in the editing room. Documentary editors are one of the key members of the non-fiction filmmaking team and are regarded as co-auteurs of many films, sometimes sharing credit with the director. With an abundance of visual and audio material, how does an editor go about constructing a documentary that will lead to a strong and memorable film? In this two-part masterclass on documentary editing, renowned film editor, Carla Gutierrez – whose films include “RBG”, “Pray Away” and “When Two Worlds Collide” – will discuss creative approaches to documentary editing. She will explore the subject of structure, which can be challenging for filmmakers working in the documentary genre, as well as other key elements of documentary storytelling.

*Eligibility: participants must be practising filmmakers or editors of documentary films (note: this is not an introductory course).
Click here to buy your ticket.

Click here to view Carla Gutierrez’s bio.

music + meaning: telling your story through music with composer, Miriam Cutler

Sat 25, Sun 26 Sept, 1.00–3.00 p.m. (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: free of charge; early registration required
presented in partnership with the US Embassy, Port of Spain

While film is often considered “a visual medium”, an audience’s emotional connection to the world and story of the film can be deeply enriched by a well-executed film score and soundtrack. Understanding just how music can make an impact on audiences is an essential part of creating a memorable film.

In this two-part masterclass, composer Miriam Cutler will guide participants through the process of creating meaningful stories through music, by referencing video/film material submitted by selected participants. Filmmakers and composers will submit 1–2 minute clips of their own work, to use as case studies for discussion and learning. 

This is a free masterclass, open to both documentary and narrative filmmakers and television producers. Email us at admin@filmco.org to submit your work and book your place in both sessions. Deadline for application is Friday 4 September.

*Eligibility: participants must be practising filmmakers or composers for documentary or narrative films and television (note: this is not an introductory course).**Pre-requisite requirements: participants must submit 12 minute video clips of their own edited or composed work in film or television.

Click here to view Miriam Cutler’s bio.

designing your film festival strategy with producer/ publicist, Kathleen McInnis

Tues 28 Sept, 3.00pm-4.30pm (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: free of charge; early registration required
presented in partnership with the US Embassy, Port of Spain

As any independent filmmaker knows, endless time and effort are dedicated to the pre-production, production and post-production stages of any film project. However, a crucial stage of the process which is often overlooked is designing your film festival strategy.

In this masterclass, producer Kathleen McInnis will explain the importance of planning your festival strategy from the script development stages of a project. She will give participants insight into the international festival circuit and explain how filmmakers can strategically use festivals to achieve their goals, even in this pandemic landscape. Out of the projects selected to participate, two will be chosen as case studies. 

This is a free masterclass, open to both documentary and narrative filmmakers. Email us at admin@filmco.org to submit your work and book your place. Deadline for applications is Friday 4 September.

See Kathleen’s bio in the Ask the Veterans section.

*Eligibility: must be a practising filmmaker of either documentary or narrative films (note: this is not an introductory course). **Pre-requisite requirements: participants must submit a logline and synopsis or treatment for a current film project in development, production or post-production.

Click here to view Kathleen McInnis’ bio.


workshops

developing the entrepreneurial filmmaker 

with Pip Piper

Mon 27, Tues 28 Sept, 1.00pm-3.00pm (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: TT$300/ US$45, click here to register; early registration required

Being an entrepreneurial filmmaker is tough. When it comes to raising funds for a micro- or low-budget short or feature, creatives use multiple different methods but most aren’t exactly sure of the best way to get their film made while sustaining a career in the industry. Our facilitator, Pip Piper, has extensive experience as a professional indie filmmaker. He has come up with innovative ways to create and execute films of substance; and has continued to do so throughout the years. This two-part workshop will explore the key components every entrepreneurial filmmaker needs to create a sustainable, professional life. It will look at building positive working partnerships and networks locally, regionally, and in time, internationally; and how to develop highly creative projects that have a clear path to an audience. This workshop is intended to be informative and interactive.

Click here to buy your ticket.

Click here to view Pip Piper’s bio.

using screenwriting competitions to ‘break in’

with Kyra Jones

Fri 24 Sept, 10.00–12.00 p.m. (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: TT$300/ US$45, click here to buy your ticket; early registration required

As all screenwriters know, there is no easy path to breaking into the film and TV industry. While there are many talented writers across the globe, what usually sets the successful apart is insider knowledge and endless hard work. Knowing and utilising the many different paths to ‘breaking in’ can give a screenwriter the edge needed to actually create a sustainable career, whether you’re from the Caribbean or anywhere else. Screenwriter/actress, Kyra Jones, has a wealth of information to share with motivated screenwriters who would like to take their careers to the next level. After winning multiple competitions over the last few years, she has secured herself representation by the well-regarded Echo Lake Entertainment and has recently been staffed on two TV shows. In this workshop, Kyra will share her wealth of experience, focusing on the fundamentals required to win a screenwriting or pitch competition, insight into what readers and judges may look for, and essential strategies for submitting to festivals.

Click here to buy your ticket.

Click here to view Kyra Jones’ bio.

production design fundamentals

with Alexis Johnston-Benamou

Fri 24 Sept, 5.00–7.00 p.m. (est)
location: online via Zoom
tickets: TT$300/ US$45, click here to buy your ticket; early registration required


Seasoned narrative filmmakers know the tremendous amount of value a talented production designer adds to the team. These creatives may not be as well known as directors, producers and writers but the role a production designer fills is essential to a well-produced film. But what exactly does a production designer do? And could it possibly be another career option for artists? In this two-hour workshop, production designer Alexis Johnston-Benamou will break down exactly what it takes to fill this leading role. She will touch on topics such as dissecting a script; collaborating with the director to understand their vision and inspiration; creating a visual language environment and gathering inspiration (a mood board); constructing a team; interdepartmental cohesion and creating a complete environment; and working within specific expectations.

Click here to buy your ticket.

Click here to view Alexis Johnston-Benamou’s bio.

ttff/21 WORKSHOPS are brought to you with the support of NGC.


presentations

understanding copyright

with Cindy F. Daniel

Mon 27 Sept, 10.00–11.00 a.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free

Filmmaking is a complex, collaborative undertaking. It involves many different layers of rights that relate to different elements of production, all of which need to be licenced, documented and transferred for a producer to claim ownership of a film. Having creative rights to literary or artistic work is necessary if you aim to prevent others from using your work without permission. In this one-hour presentation, lawyer Cindy F. Daniel will answer important questions about why copyright is important to filmmakers; how copyright permissions impact budget and how filmmakers can protect and enforce copyright. She will also provide case studies on copyright conflict in film and television.

Click here to view Cindy F. Daniel’s bio.

Click here to register.

distributing your work with FILMCO

with Mariel Brown

Tues 28 Sept, 10.00–11.30 a.m. (est)
location:  Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free

Distribution is a key element of filmmaking, providing an avenue for films to be seen by an audience and to earn revenue. In today’s ever-changing industry, it’s important for filmmakers and producers alike to stay up to date with the latest opportunities. FILMCO currently distributes upwards of 150 film and television titles and has brokered deals with regional and international companies such as TTT, ShortsTV and PAVILION+, not to mention having launched their own platform, FILMCO2GO, in February 2021. In this presentation, FILMCO’s interim executive director and co-founder, Mariel Brown, will delve into the distribution workings of FILMCO, discuss distribution in the online space, deliverables and promotional materials, as well as answering questions from filmmakers about the opportunities and options in today’s film distribution landscape.

Click here to view Mariel Brown’s bio.

Click here to register.

the role of the sound recordist

with Cedric Smart

Sun 26 Sept, 1.00–2.30 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube
Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free

Sound: what would a film or TV series be without it? It’s the narrative element that moves audiences and transports them to another world. Yet until you work with a sound recordist, it’s difficult to fully appreciate the intricacies of this craft. In this live online event, veteran sound recordist Cedric Smart will teach participants about successful sound recording. Smart will go through topics and areas such as hybrid pre-production, equipment knowledge, kit basics, budget, working with the sound department and production. Participants will have the opportunity to pose questions during the presentation and benefit from Smart’s extensive knowledge and experience.

Click here to view Cedric Smart’s bio.

Click here to register.

music clearances in film

with Fabien Alfonso

Mon 27 Sept, 3.00–4.00 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free


How is the term Intellectual Property applicable to music? When it comes to legalese, do you know the difference between protected music and music in the public domain? How about the difference between using an original musical score, pre-existing musical compositions, or sound recordings? Among the plethora of details, a filmmaker must remember when producing a film, legal requirements for music licensing have proven to be one of the more tricky areas for local producers to grasp. There are various types of music licences used in film production, and in this one-hour presentation, IP Specialist Fabien Alfonso will clarify the details of music clearances in film and further highlight the adverse effects of not obtaining such clearances. 

Click here to view Fabien Alfonso’s bio.

Click here to register.

rbl digital banking solutions for the creative sector

Sat 25 Sept, 10.00–11.00 a.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free

In the digital age, and especially during pandemic times, creatives are increasingly looking for simpler ways to earn revenue in the online space and to minimise time spent doing mundane yet necessary tasks. Republic Bank Ltd’s new digital banking platform can provide the solutions you need as a creative to operate your business more efficiently. In this one-hour session, a team member from Republic Bank Ltd will explain the new digital banking solutions: Republic Online and Republic Mobile. The presenter will touch on multiple features, including the easily accessible third party transfers to local and international banks, Cardless Cash and ENDCASH.

Click here to register.

ttff/21 PRESENTATIONS are brought to you with the support of Republic Bank Ltd


info session

FILMCO info session: TT production rebate

with Regina Seabrun

Tues 28 Sept, 1.00–2.00 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free

There are many reasons productions choose to shoot their films in Trinidad and Tobago, but one of the most beneficial elements of filming in T&T is the Production Expenditure Rebate Programme, offered by the Trinidad and Tobago Film Company (FilmTT). This programme can save producers money by offering significant “cash back” percentages to both local and international producers. In this one-hour session, FilmTT’s facilitation officer, Regina Seabrun, will explain the different rebate programme tiers; which types of productions qualify; which production expenses qualify; how to calculate rebates; how to apply for the rebate and everything in between.

Click here to view Regina Seabrun’s bio.

Click here to register.

This ttff/21 InfoSession is brought to you by FILMCO


talks

ttff talk with Zak Ové 

Fri 24 Sept, ​​3.00–4.00 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube
Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderators: Marsha Pearce + Atillah Springer


Visual artist, filmmaker and curator, Zak Ové has built a career around a visual iconography that is both recognisably Caribbean and seems at home in a variety of international spaces. Elder son of filmmaker Horace Ové, Zak is also actively involved in documenting and preserving his father’s legacy. In this ttff talk, art writer and educator, Marsha Pearce, and cultural activist, Atillah Springer will delve into Ové’s creative practice as well as his role in preserving his father’s substantial legacy.

Click here to view the bios of Zak and Horace Ové.

Click here to register.

ttff talk with Michèle Stephenson

Sat 25 Sept, ​​3.00–4.00 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: Georgia Popplewell

Three-time Emmy-nominated Canadian filmmaker and artist Michèle Stephenson draws on her Panamanian and Haitian roots to tell stories. In this in-depth discussion, we will plumb her mission to elucidate the experiences of marginalised communities of colour, and explore her creative routes to creating compelling films.

Click here to view Michèle Stephenson’s bio.

Click here to register.

ttff/21 TALKS are brought to you with the support of NGC


panels

Please click here to register for all panels.

narrative filmmakers panel
Sun 26 Sept, ​​3.00–4.30 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: Teneille Newallo
panellists: Andrés Farías, Ayana Harper, Juliette McCawley, Macha Colón, Yannis Sainte-Rose
Please click here to view the narrative filmmakers.

documentary filmmakers panel
Sat 25 Sept, ​​5.00–6.30 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: Janine Mendes-Franco
panellists: Alexandra Warner, Eleonore Coyette, François Gruson, Nicola Cross, Rudy Hypolite, Ian Harnarine
Please click here to view the documentary filmmakers.

new media panel
Wed 22 September, ​​3.00–4.30 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: Melanie Archer
panellists: Lisa-Marie Harris, Ada M. Patterson, Alicia Diaz, Keoni K. Wright, Laura Iancu, Richard Mark Rawlins
Please click here to view the new media panellists.

the Caribbean gaze: authenticity versus universality
Wed 22 Sept, ​​5.00pm-6.30pm (est)
location:  Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: Mariel Brown 
panellists: Asha Lovelace, Gabrielle Blackwood, Ian Harnarine, Justine Henzell
Please click here to view the panellists.

Creating a unique and authentic story that connects with audiences across the globe is a challenge for any filmmaker. If your desire is to produce an original yet honest film you must develop a new and interesting world and, at the same time, tell a story that your and other cultures can relate to and that feels authentic. Panellists from across the region will go in-depth in this 90-minute discussion on how to remain authentic in your work as a Caribbean storyteller while creating material that resonates with an international audience. 

understanding risk in filmmaking
Thurs 23 Sept, ​​10.00–11.30 a.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: Jason Lindsay
panellists: Kareem Mortimer, Lorraine O’Connor, Michael Mooleedhar
Please click here to view the panellists.

Understanding the creative side of producing a great film is not always enough to ensure success. Investors need to feel confident in the filmmaker’s ability to return a profit. Understanding the business side of filmmaking is a valuable asset when approaching investors for your film. This knowledge can also help to secure you a continued career in the industry. This 90-minute discussion will address both the filmmaker and the investor’s point of view on “risk in filmmaking”. The experienced panel will give insights from these different perspectives on how successful filmmakers turn investments into profit and explain why it’s so important to take the risk and invest. 

cultural appropriation and the Caribbean space
Sun 26 Sept, ​​10.00–11.30 a.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: Franka Philip
panellists: Alpha Obika, Abeo Jackson
Please click here to view the panellists.

Because of our multicultural history, the Caribbean has evolved to become a region overflowing with diversity and creativity. While there are similarities between the nations, each country has its own uniquely expressed culture and entanglement of traditions and practices brought by different settlers, whether free, enslaved or indentured. We can be protective of the artistic forms and practices that we’ve developed over the years because they tell a story of our roots, evolution and possible future. But, given that we are a region built on “appropriation”, whether forced or organic, can we argue against cultural appropriation? In this 90-minute conversation, journalist Franka Philip will delve into the effects of cultural appropriation across the Caribbean while giving her own insight into the topic.

misogyny and the male gaze
Thurs 23 Sept, ​​1.00–2.30 p.m. (est)
location: Facebook Live, YouTube Live, ttfilmfestival.com
tickets: free
moderator: BC Pires
panellists: Nicola Cross, Ryan Lee, Sue Ann Barratt
Please click here to view the panellists.

For almost all of its history, men have dominated the film and TV industry. The representation of women on screen and behind the scenes is a direct corollary of that domination. But the global MeToo movement has brought these inequalities into sharp focus. This notwithstanding, the famed Bechdel test is still consistently failed, as women are presented through the lens of the male gaze. In this 90-minute session, panellists will take an in-depth look into the problematics of the ubiquitous male gaze in contemporary and Caribbean cinema; they’ll discuss how this shapes societal perception and the possible routes to transformation.

ttff/21 panels are brought to you with the support of Shell Trinidad and Tobago Ltd

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Belmont, Port of Spain,
Trinidad and Tobago, WI

Tel: 1.868.323.3228