International Reggae Film Festival

This week I’m blogging from Ocho Rios Jamaica, the location of this year’s International Reggae Film Festival.

Last night was the first of five nights of films, documentaries, animation, music videos and fellowship for film enthusiast from around the region and the world.

I would firstly like to thank Mark Foster of SWAT Productions for bringing me along to this film festival, great guy.

The Festival

Although last night was plagued by technical difficulties which forced the programme to start late and end early, we were still able to view a few films, grab some interviews and engage in dialogue with film makers from around the world. I was impressed by some of the work of Jamaican film makers, especially the animators. I think there is a bright future for animation in Jamaica evidenced by the buzz  recently created by such events as Kingstoon.

I was less impresses by the organisation of the overall event. It seemed a bit lacklustre in presentation and preparation, this may have been due to budget constraints or maybe I was expecting too much.

I believe if we are to get more attention and generate revenue for the film industry in Jamaica, festivals such as the Reggae Film Festival have a huge part to play and must up the ante. To reach international standards we must strive for excellence in all that we do.

All in all it was a pretty good start for me and I applaud the efforts of the organising committee.

I love film festivals because they are filled with people who are involved in film and can be a great way to make connections, get help for my own films or just learn from others in the industry.

Not to mention you get to view the work of your peers, for me this fuels my inspiration. Either I think the film is crap and I could do much better or I’m blown away and I strive to make my next film much better. Which ever it i,s I find these festivals a great source of inspiration.

I look forward to the rest of the festival which hopefully will be without further technical difficulties.

One of the Interviews we shot at the opening night of the International Reggae Film Festival.


No Maddz share their views on the film industry in Jamaica.

Kishmar Shepherd


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