Tobago is aiming towards building a robust and sustainable film industry through the launch of the Tobago Rural Film initiative, last Wednesday.
This is now expected to encourage and combine the strengths of emerging filmmakers on the island through the Tobago Heritage Festival, to create a portal for the Tobago film industry onto the international stage.
At the launch of the initiative at the division at Sangster’s Hill, Scarborough, Secretary for the Division Nadine Stewart-Phillips said the focus is not only to diversify but to enhance the skills of those aspiring in the creative arts industry.
“This seeks to promote the development of Tobago’s unique cultural and tourism industries through the use of film. We are mindful Tobago has a rich, vibrant history and heritage; this initiative will further enhance that pertinent aspect of Tobago culture and heritage and accurately document, preserve and market the island,” Stewart-Phillips said, adding that there is hope this programme will act as a “springboard for investments and research tourism whereby the island of Tobago can become a premier destination for both filmmaking and research of indigenous, locals and West Indian history and practices.”
Facilitator Melvina Hazard said this programme also expected to highlight Tobago’s dynamic and rich cultural history.
As part of the programme, members of Tobago heritage groups will be invited to submit their stage scripts by May 20. The scripts will be evaluated and the top pick will be converted into a 30-minute short film.
There will also be a weekend of workshops leading up to the Tobago Heritage Festival in July.