Blue Frames nom­i­nated for Os­car? Could Hap­pen!

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL - By

Faye-Chantelle Mon­de­sir

On Wed­nes­day the STAR dropped by the In­ter­na­tional School in Rod­ney Heights to speak with Colin Weekes and stu­dents of the Blue Frames Ini­tia­tive. As demon­strated by the pro­duc­ers of the Pi­rates of the Caribbean se­ries and other box of­fice smashes, the po­ten­tial of the re­gion is un­de­ni­able. A vet­eran film pro­ducer, Weekes wel­comed this re­porter.

“I pro­duce a youth film fes­ti­val,” he said. “This will be our fourth year of pro­duc­tion. We are about en­cour­ag­ing young peo­ple to join our in­dus­try at the ear­li­est age.” He said it was at his sug­ges­tion that the In­ter­na­tional School take on the af­ter-school pro­gramme that was launched in Jan­uary.

Weekes ad­vised, “I’ve been in­ter­ested in the world of tele­vi­sion and film from child­hood. On leav­ing St. Mary’s Col­lege I went to work with HTS which was, at the time, the only av­enue avail­able to me.”

He later moved to the States to study TV pro­duc­tion, com­puter graph­ics and ad­ver­tis­ing. On his re­turn home he founded Dove Pro­duc­tions. His ef­forts paid off. He has re­ceived pub­lic recog­ni­tion, in­clud­ing M&C Fine Arts Awards, for his work.

In 2008 he went back to school in the UK to study dig­i­tal film-mak­ing. “I had reached the point where I wanted to get a move on. So, here I am, push­ing the whole film in­dus­try. I have been do­ing a lot of back­ground work with the govern­ment and other en­ti­ties.”

Weekes has been con­nected with the RISE Film Fes­ti­val, soon to be the Caribbean Youth Film Fes­ti­val, for al­most four years. He was es­pe­cially pleased that one of his films will fea­ture as part of this year’s Jazz & Arts Fes­ti­val, in the Arts Vil­lage.

“It’s some­thing we have lob­bied for for over three years,” Weekes re­vealed. It hasn’t been easy. Peo­ple still see the Arts as a not eco­nom­i­cally vi­able in­dus­try. There will be hur­dles but they can be over­come with hard work. Oth­ers have done so, and so can we.”

And how have things been go­ing? “Its been pretty awe­some,” Weekes re­sponded. “We have had the op­por­tu­nity to go to DBS,” one of his stu­dents of­fered. “It was some­thing new and in­ter­est­ing.” An­other stu­dent added: “I now have a bet­ter ap­pre­ci­a­tion for films. When I go to the movies I catch my­self ev­ery now and then ex­claim­ing, “Wow!” I can now rec­og­nize good di­a­logue and great writ­ing. Some­times I dare to say to my­self that this and that could have been bet­ter done this way or that way,” he mused, “or that I would have taken a par­tic­u­lar shot from a dif­fer­ent an­gle.”

The two-days-a-week course con­tin­ues into June. “It is called Blue Frames be­cause that’s the colour of the school’s uni­form,” Weekes joked. “The stu­dents pro­duce a pro­gramme called Youth Per­spec­tives, the slo­gan be­ing ‘Your news, Our Views’. They have done three re­ports for DBS News so far and will do an­other next week.”

The Blue Frames pro­gramme, as part of its cur­ricu­lum, seeks to in­tro­duce cam­era an­gle, cam­era com­po­si­tion and, of course, light­ing and how one ‘tells a story through the lens of a cam­era’. In­for­ma­tion can be ac­cessed via the Face­book page ‘Youth Per­spec­tive - Blue Frames’, where the pub­lic can ac­quire a be­hind the scenes or in­side look at the ini­tia­tive.

Colin Weekes with stu­dents of the In­ter­na­tional School.

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