Usain Visits TCI To Help Launch TCI Film Festival

Usain Bolt, the world’s fastest sprinter is in Turks and Caicos Islands to help promote the inaugural Turks & Caicos International Film Festival (TCIFF) which is scheduled to take place on Providenciales from November 15th to 17th, 2019. 

The launch of the event was celebrated on May 1st, 2019 at Shore Club Resort, followed by a cocktail reception which allowed for mix and mingle and was also where World renowned Turks and Caicos artist, Bradley Theodore Harvey unveiled and auctioned a special new piece.

With a dual theme of Blue and Green, A homegrown festival, the TCIFF will showcase cinematographic stories centred on oceans and the environment with international features, short films, documentaries, and workshops. There is no longer a dedicated cinema in Providenciales, the home of the festival but two specially designed screening rooms will be created at the host venue, The Shore Club and The Palms. 

The Festival has secured an exciting partnership in its first major sponsor, telecommunication provider Digicel TCI.

During a press briefing on Wednesday May 1st, Festival Director Colin Burrows said, “The film festival came about couple of years ago when we were talking about trying to find something culture that will bring different strands of the islands together and because I work in the film industry it was my default answer to have a film festival. The more we’ve done this, the more it is becoming and there is a real value for this in the islands.”

He stated that there is a small but significant young group of filmmakers and they want to give them an opportunity to showcase their work.

He added: “One of the things that have been fantastic is working with the kids on the islands. We are already up and running with the schools program and I am hoping for a lot of beginnings. I am not expecting to fix the problems of the environment and I am not expecting to change the artistic of the islands but I want to give kids a chance to follow their dreams and this will give them that chance.”

Digicel Ambassador, Usain Bolt said he is very happy to see things like this happening in the Caribbean in general. 

“I feel like if you have a festival, it s yearly thing and you can come and learn from different people than it will come together as one.” 

Asked what is next for himself, Bolt replied: “There’s a lot going on but mainly I work with my sponsors. I haven’t decided what I directly want to do now. I am just trying to enjoy retirement a little bit. I do have a few upcoming projects that I am working on but for me I leave that up to my team to deal with but personally I am just trying to relax and do a lot of charity work and work with my sponsors. That’s my focus for the next two years and then after that, I will figure out what I want.”

The three-day festival will run several film strands screening at multiple locations, plus workshops and the Making Waves discussion program. 
In addition, throughout 2019 the Festival will be working with local school children, teaching film-making skills that will encourage them to create short stories about conservation from their unique perspective.
The organizing committee comprises Islanders and residents with experience in the film industry, the hotel business, the media and the environment. 

In addition to the films, there will be film-maker Q&A, seminars and workshops which will bring Hollywood professionals to the Island to debate and discuss the best ways to tell compelling stories about the environment.

A gala evening is to be hosted at The Shore Club on Long Bay.

The Turks and Caicos International Film Festival is a non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about the conservation of the environment and showcasing local emerging talent. Find out more on the website: tciff.org or contact info@tciff.org.