Breaking The Blockages To Making Your Film with Menelik Shabazz
Saturday 4 July 2015 (17:00 – 18:00)
To make a film takes more than just an idea. It’s about surmounting challenges, which for independent filmmakers is often about finance. Having little or no budget can present sometimes what seem like an insurmountable hurdle. How you navigate this is the difference between being a filmmaker and being a wannabe filmmaker who has lots of ideas and projects but can’t get them off the ground. So, how do you find a way through the financial blocks and make your film? The secret is not where you might think. Menelik Shabazz share’s insights into how he overcame the blocks to keep producing films.
Menelik Shabazz, Director and bfmmedia/bfmiff Founder
Menelik Shabazz is an Award winning film director, producer, and writer – known as a key pioneer in the development of contemporary black British cinema. Born in St. John, Barbados in 1954, he has lived in the UK since the age of five. From an early age Menelik watched mobile cinema in his village in Barbados, but didn’t entertain the idea of making films until age 18. This was when he was introduced to the first portable video technology whilst studying at North London College. This revolutionary technology, the Sony port-a-pack, demystified filmmaking and made the filmmaking process accessible. Thereafter, Menelik enrolled at the London International Film School. Unfortunately, he was only able to attend for a short period, as his local Borough Council Haringey refused to give him the ‘discretionary grant’ required. However within that short period, he was able to grasp important knowledge, confidence and inspiration to move forward as a filmmaker.
Menelik is best known for his acclaimed debut feature Burning An Illusion, which won the Grand Prix at the Amien International Film Festival in 1982. The film also won the lead actress, Cassie Macfarlane, the Evening Standard Award for ‘Promising Actress’(1982). Burning An Illusion was only the second feature film by a black director produced in the UK. The film continues to be shown today on media courses at Universities and Colleges and has become a cult classic. His latest film ‘Looking For Love 2015’ premiered at the BFI to sold-out audiences.