ST. JOHN’S, Antigua – Caribbean artists must develop the ability to analyse their work so they can improve on future projects, says renowned Playwright David Edgecombe during the first day of Beyond the Screen being held at City View Hotel, Antigua.
Edgecombe was participating in the workshop From Script to Screen being led by award winning director Neema Barnette and Howard Allen of HAMAFilms. The playwright told the group he was impressed at Allen’s self-critique of his first film The Sweetest Mango and the lessons he learned about crafting a better story and creating more visual films. “This is fundamental to the growth of any artist and the film industry is that we develop the ability to analyse the work that we have done,” Edgecombe commented. “The ability not to be afraid to look at your work and how it can develop is a very good thing.”
Barnette and her husband actor Reed McCants are on island to teach at the first Beyond the Screen co-hosted by HAMAFilms and goldenmedia which is a collaboration with the Antigua & Barbuda Literary Festival.
McCants urged the participants who come from around Antigua, Barbados and Grenada to be confident about telling their own stories. He said confidence was the only barrier stopping the next big movie hit from coming out of the Caribbean. “The barriers of no access to technology or getting people to see your movie are gone and it is critical that Caribbean people tell their own Caribbean story.”
Barnette, who has directed ten television films and three feature films, noted that people either tell a story from a position of self-love or self-hate. Knowing where you are positioned changes what will make it to the screen. She shared personal stories of developing screenplays and the process of creating characters that present different aspects of our experience.
In the afternoon session discussions centred around developing a movie treatment and the various team roles and activities involved in taking the story to the big screen. Garvey Louison who runs RushTV.net out of Grenada said the workshop was a good learning tool which he plans to take back to his island to encourage the development of more content for his internet TV channel.
Other upcoming events at Beyond the Screen include Thursday’s workshop on Acting for Film and an Evening with Neema on Friday at Sugar Ridge Resort. David Edgecombe will be one of the featured authors at Saturday’s Reading Room to be held at The Best of Books in St. John’s.
Beyond the Screen is sponsored by Carib World Travel, City View Hotel and the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority.