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The Download: Making Holiday Movie Magic

On Tuesday, December 20th at 7:30 PM ET, join us for the last edition of The Download for 2022!

We’ve invited a few incredible guests – from actors to directors – to take a seat at the virtual table to discuss making the holiday movie!

Meet Our Moderator

Ariel E. Driskellis an American author, screenwriter, and producer based in Atlanta, GA. As a master storyteller (think Yoda + Issa Rae) she uses words to heal people. Originally from Florida, Ariel attended and graduated from Florida A&M University. Her degree in Psychology empowers her to create diverse and relatable characters that capture the hearts of audiences all over the world. In 2013, Ariel published her first book, “A Life Less Interrupted,” and started her film career in 2017. Since then, she has focused on writing and producing films for networks such as BET. Ariel’s network debut project, “Thin Like Me,” which was directed by veteran actress, Meagan Good, was released in July of 2022. And her highly anticipated holiday film, “The First Noelle,” is currently streaming on BET+.”

Meet Our Panelists

Terri J. Vaughn

Terri J. Vaughn first stole America’s heart with her comical portrayal of the lovable Lovita Alizay Jenkins on The Steve Harvey Show. After six successful seasons, she went on to star in Will Smith’s executive produced comedy All of Us, Showtime’s hit drama Soul Food, and Tyler Perry’s Meet The Browns. Terri currently stars on the upcoming seasons of Ava DuVernay’s Cherish The Day, BET’s First Wives Club and BounceTV’s Johnsons. Terri has been honored with three NAACP Image Awards for her work on The Steve Harvey Show.

As a director, Terri’s latest project, Unthinkably Good Things, filmed in Rome, Italy, is slated to launch Crown Media’s Hallmark Mahogany brand in August 2022. She also just wrapped on an episode of Disney’s Bunk’d. Other notable projects directed by Terri is the first comedic episode of BET’s TALES and Reuben Cannon Entertainment’s Soul Santa. She’s directed several Viacom movies, including the romantic comedy Angrily Ever After, the fun family classic ‘Twas The Chaos Before Christmas.

As a producer, Terri has produced over 16 projects under her independent production company, Nina Holiday Entertainment, with her producing partner Cas Sigers-Beedles.Terri produced and starred in television’s highly rated Girlfriends’ Getaway and its sequel, Girlfriends Getaway 2.

Out of her desire to give back to her community, Terri founded Take Wings Foundation(1997), in the San Francisco Bay Area to mentor young women growing up in at risk communities. Terri’s passion is to uplift and motivate young women to believe in themselves. Terri is represented by Buchwald Agency, managed by Kronicle Media.

Kamel Goffin

Kamel Goffin, the Brooklyn, New York born and bred actor started his acting career training at the Lee Strasberg Acting and Film Institution. He continued his training at New York Film Academy where he was able to hone his skills on the craft he loves. Kamel has been in a number of independent projects before breaking through the door of the industry. You can see him mixing words with the great Forest Whitaker in the second season of Godfather of Harlem (Epix) as drug King pin Moses Temple. He also made an appearance in the series Atlanta (FX), Power (Starz) and Netflix’s Colin in Black and White to name a few. In addition to his episodic features, Kamel was also a part of BET’s feature film, The Business of Christmas 1 and 2, alongside industry veterans Daphne Maxwell Reid and Roger Guenveur Smith.

The former basketball player, barber and law enforcement officer has found a way to use all of these skills to deepen his well to draw from, for character building. This is just the tip of the iceberg for this talented actor so get used to seeing his face across your movie and television screens.

The Download

Offered multiple times a year, The Download is a special virtual guest conversation series hosted by the Black TV & Film Collective. It features impactful filmmakers who provide insider knowledge to help Black creatives do their work. Recent guests on The Download have included Aaron Rahsaan Thomas, Charlene Polite Corley, the editing team of A Black Lady Sketch Show and Janine Sherman Barrois. 

#MakeYourWork

Join us at this edition of The Download and get the information and inspiration you need to #MakeYourWork! RSVP today!

Questions? Contact [email protected].

Interested in becoming a member? Sign up for our BTFC Membership!

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Office Hours: Get Help On Your Project

WRITERS, this one’s for YOU! Need some extra support to help you #MakeYourWork? Let ‘s go!

On Tuesday, December 13th from 4:00 to 6:00 PM ET, chat with BTFC Co-Founder and award-winning writer, producer and director Laura Fielder during BTFC Office Hours! She’ll do her best to support you and help you move your project forward!

 

During BTFC Office Hours we’ll answer general production questions and provide an environment where you can get advice and feedback on your projects from industry professionals.

How can we better describe them? It’s an open door for any member who would like to just come in and ask a question. Get a second pair of eyes on a rough cut, get some help on budgets, have your script reviewed…

Remember back in the day when our professors had office hours and you would just go in to ask a question or get some help? That is what these office hours are like.

Join us to talk about your project and ideas, so that you’re better equipped to move them forward. It’s all-time well spent.

Meet Laura

Laura Fielder is a writer, director and producer. Her award-winning projects have screened at the Hip Hop Film Festival, the Toronto Black Film Festival, The Katra Film Series, and the American Black Film Festival. Laura’s screenplays have placed in numerous competitions including the BlueCat Screenplay Competition. Laura is a working member of The Gotham’s Expanding Communities Summit – a cohort of diverse independent film professionals. She is also a member of NYWIFT. Laura is a graduate of UCLA TFT Professional Screenwriting Program. A classically trained violinist, Laura is an alum of The CUNY Graduate Center (MA, Ethnomusicology).

NOTE: 40-minute slots will be assigned on a first RSVP basis. A Zoom link and information form will be sent to you 48 hours before your session. Please block out 6:00 – 8:00 PM ET on your calendar until your slot is received.

 

This event is exclusive to BTFC MEMBERS ONLY.

Members, make sure to use your code to access this event!

Interested in becoming a member? Visit www.blacktvfilmcollective.org/join

BACK TO NEWS & EVENTS

Office Hours: Get Help On Your Project

Producers, this one’s for YOU! Need some extra support to help you #MakeYourWork? Let’s go!

On Tues. October 15th at 4 PM ET, chat with BTFC Board Member, Emmy-nominated producer and director Okema T. Moore about your project! During Office Hours we do our best to offer insight and feedback that can help push you forward!

During BTFC Office Hours we’ll answer general production questions and provide an environment where you can get advice and feedback on your projects from industry professionals.

How can we better describe them? It’s an open door for any member who would like to just come in and ask a question. Get a second pair of eyes on a rough cut, get some help on budgets, have your script reviewed…Remember back in the day when our professors had office hours and you would just go in to ask a question or get some help? That is what these office hours are like.

Join us to talk about your projects and ideas, so that you’re better equipped to move them forward. It’s all-time well spent.

NOTE: 40-minute slots will be assigned on a first RSVP basis. A Zoom link and form will be sent to you 48 hours before your session. Please block out 4:00 – 6:00 PM ET on your calendar until your slot is received.

 

About Okema T. Moore

 

Okema T. Moore is an EMMY nominated, PGA producer as well as a director, writer and actor. She has worked on projects for OWN, Netflix, FOX, Food Network, TLC and more. Most recently she produced on BET’s Klutch Academy, Showran and Directed BRIC TV’s first late-night talk show and was featured in Variety Magazine speaking on the need for Black Producers to have access to finances to support their work. Okema serves on the board of both NY Women in Film & TV and The Black TV & Film Collective and has committed to lifting while she climbs these industry ladders.

 

This event is exclusive to BTFC MEMBERS ONLY.

Members, make sure to use your code to access this event!

Interested in becoming a member? Visit www.blacktvfilmcollective.org/join

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The BTFC Presents The Download LIVE in New York

*Seats are limited. No tickets will be sold at the door. Vaccination required, masks are optional*.

On Friday, October 28th at 4:00 PM ET, join us for another edition of The Download LIVE at the Urbanworld Film Festival in New York City!

The BTFC and the Urbanworld Film Festival are partnering up to host a conversation that highlights the multiverse of paths creatives can take to build a career in TV & Film. 

Meet Our Moderator

Okema T. Moore is an Emmy Nominated, PGA producer and rising director. She produced the narrative 2019 ABFF winner Little Apple, and The Future is Then, which was a Tribeca N.O.W. 2019 selection. She has directed and produced branded content for clients including Lifetime, Netflix, Nickelodeon, DreamWorks, FOX, and Disney/Marvel. Her most recent work includes docs The Color of Care (OWN), UNLADYLIKE (PBS/American Masters) and Klutch Academy (BET), as well as culinary hits The Kitchen and Beat Bobby Flay (Food Network). She Showran and Directed her first series in 2021, Hella Late! with Hollie Harper (BRIC TV), and was a finalist in this year’s Blackhouse Producer’s Lab, as well as a semifinalist Stowe Story Lab Diverse Voices Fellowship, the Commercial Diversity Director’s Program and The Sundance Producer’s Track for 2022. In 2021 Okema was a Fellow for Minority in FILM’s inaugural 2021 Branded Lab for directors while helping to run the Black TV & Film Collective’s Black Producer Fellowship. Okema serves on the boards of both The Black TV & Film Collective Board of Directors and NY Women in Film & TV and is committed to continuing to lift while she climbs to build up womxn, queer, IPOC and Black creatives.

Meet Our Panelists

Luis G. Santos

Luis G. Santos was born and raised in the Bronx, NY to a hustler business-man Father and a white-collar worker Mother who’s a closeted writer. As a child, Luis observed his father’s strong business acumen by day, & snuck around the house to find his mother’s beautiful-yet-hidden writings at night. This juxtaposition is what sparked Luis’ obsession with developing a strong business sense and his never-ending dedication to perfecting his artistic craft.

While writing & directing his own short films in hopes of developing projects for TV & FILM, Luis climbed the corporate ladder – starting an internship at 72&sunny and later producing at Mother NY, McCan, & VEVO. This collection of experiences has helped Luis attain a deep understanding of how to excel as a director, writer, and producer in Film, TV, & Commercial productions while also enabling him to properly understand the corporate structure firsthand. Luis has also carved a lane for himself in the Music & Live entertainment spaces, directing work for artists such as Future, Jessie Reyes, Pusha T, Latto, & many more.

Artesia Balthrop

For over a decade, Brooklyn‐bred film/television/video producer Artesia Balthrop has racked up a laundry list of credits working on a variety of projects at flagship media brands like VH1 (Hip Hop Honors, Storytellers, The Great Debate), Bravo (Kandi Factory), TLC (Next Great Baker); E! (Kourtney and Kim Take New York); Essence magazine’s award-winning website ESSENCE.com, and with JAY-Z on his award nominated YouTube channel, Life + Times. Her present works finds line producing for Comedy Central’s Hell Of A Week w Charlamagne Tha God and Eyes On The Prize (HBO). She has also Executive Produced the independent short African BootyScratcher (2008, dir. Nikyatu Jusu); which premiered at the American Black Film Festival and was licensed by HBO for their Black history month collection. She also produced the viral documentary Where I’m From on JAY Z’s inaugural concert series to open the Barclays Arena. Ms. Balthrop attended Duke University, where she majored in Public Policy. In her teens, she learned to embrace key Quaker values like simplicity, equality and community by attending The Brooklyn Friends School. She now imbues her visual projects with similar ideals, and is a staunch proponent of using film and television as a storytelling tool.

The Download

Offered multiple times a year, The Download is a special virtual guest conversation series hosted by the Black TV & Film Collective. It features impactful filmmakers who provide insider knowledge to help Black creatives do their work.

First, our guest participates in a 1:1 conversation with our host about their journey and current career.

Then, we provide selected BTFC members with an opportunity to take a seat at the table with our guests and ask questions and advice of this industry veteran. In turn, our members are provided with an opportunity to engage in conversation with someone whose career might inspire them. Those who attend are also further encouraged and motivated to make their work! Recent guests on The Download have included Aaron Rahsaan Thomas, Charlene Polite Corley, the editing team of A Black Lady Sketch Show and Janine Sherman Barrois. 

#MakeYourWork

Join us at this edition of The Download and get the information and inspiration you need to #MakeYourWork! RSVP today!

Questions? Contact [email protected].

Interested in becoming a member? Sign up for our BTFC Membership!

*Seats are limited. No tickets will be sold at the door. Vaccination required, masks are optional*.

BACK TO NEWS & EVENTS

Office Hours: Get Help On Your Project

Producers, this one’s for YOU! Need some extra support to help you #MakeYourWork? Let’s go!

Chat with BTFC Board Member and writer, director, and Emmy-nominated producer (UnladyLike 2020) Okema T. Moore about your project! During Office Hours we do our best to offer insight and feedback that can help push you forward!

During BTFC Office Hours we’ll answer general production questions and provide an environment where you can get advice and feedback on your projects from industry professionals.

How can we better describe them? It’s an open door for any member who would like to just come in and ask a question. Get a second pair of eyes on a rough cut, get some help on budgets, have your script reviewed…Remember back in the day when our professors had office hours and you would just go in to ask a question or get some help? That is what these office hours are like.

Join us to talk about your projects and ideas, so that you’re better equipped to move them forward. It’s all-time well spent.

NOTE: 40-minute slots will be assigned on a first RSVP basis. A Zoom link and form will be sent to you 48 hours before your session. Please block out 4:00 – 6:00 PM ET on your calendar until your slot is received.

 

About Okema T. Moore

 

Okema T. Moore is an EMMY nominated, PGA producer as well as a director, writer and actor. She has worked on projects for OWN, Netflix, FOX, Food Network, TLC and more. Most recently she produced on BET’s Klutch Academy, Showran and Directed BRIC TV’s first late-night talk show and was featured in Variety Magazine speaking on the need for Black Producers to have access to finances to support their work. Okema serves on the board of both NY Women in Film & TV and The Black TV & Film Collective and has committed to lifting while she climbs these industry ladders.

 

This event is exclusive to BTFC MEMBERS ONLY.

Members, make sure to use your code to access this event!

Interested in becoming a member? Visit www.blacktvfilmcollective.org/join

BACK TO NEWS & EVENTS

Building Your Network

On Thursday, Oct. 28th at 7:30 PM ET; join us for another conversation on directing – and this time, we’re talking about building your network – and netWORTH! 

Building your network can be trivial if you’re unsure where to start. Is film school still a better option than going the unorthodox route? How do you distinguish yourself – better yet, how do you even find your voice and brand in such a saturated market? We’re taking the guesswork and self-doubt out of your journey with this panel of creatives who have taken different paths in their journey – but all meet here at the BTFC Director’s Chair!

This panel will be moderated by award-winning filmmaker, musician, photographer, and artist, Quincy G. Ledbetter (Director, 2021 Webby Award Winner “Alieu the Dreamer”). Quincy will be joined by other multi-hyphenate creatives who have chartered unknown territory but are still Making Their Work! This panel features Denzel Whitaker (NAACP Award-Winning Actor & Filmmaker), Lisa Janae (Actor, Filmmaker & Founder of TERRA Visuals LLC), Craig T. Williams (Writer/Producer/Editor), and Yhá Mourhia Wright (Award-Winning Filmmaker & Actor, “#LoveMyRoomie”).

Our discussion will be followed by an audience Q&A – see you there and come ready to take notes!

 

ABOUT QUINCY G. LEDBETTER

Quincy G. Ledbetter is a filmmaker, musician, photographer, and artist from Brooklyn, New York by way of Woodbridge, Virginia. As a self-taught jack of all trades, Quincy excels in writing, directing, editing, cinematography, and music composition. His work in digital media has won an Edward Murrow Award and an ASME Ellie Award for News Documentary (2018), an Emmy Nomination for Short Format Daytime Program (2017), and a Webby Award (2016 and 2021). Quincy has worked with notable organizations such as BET Networks, Paramount Players, NPR, Color of Change, Mashable, Mic.com, HuffPost, Vox, and The New York Times.  qledbetter.com

 

ABOUT DENZEL WHITAKER

Born in Torrance, California, Denzel Whitaker is best known for his award-winning role in THE GREAT DEBATERS, performing opposite of his two namesakes, Denzel Washington and Forest Whitaker. Numerous film and television shows list Denzel’s name including fan favorites: BLACK PANTHER, CUT THROAT CITY, BET’s ALIEU THE DEAMER, THE PURGE TV series, WARRIOR, U SHOOT VIDEOS?, and TRAINING DAY.In 2011, Denzel simultaneously began developing his skillset behind the camera as a filmmaker. Since then, he’s garnered millions of views in the music video space, worked 5 years at Cartoon Network on hits shows including BOONDOCKS and BLACK DYNAMITE, and is a published fashion photographer. His latest film ‘5150’, is an official selection at this year’s Hollyshorts Film Festival and Tribeca NOW Creators Market. Co-written and directed by Denzel, starring Jovan Adepo and executive produced by David Oyelowo, the film is currently being developed into a TV series. Denzel is a dynamic, young filmmaker with a unique voice and a burning desire to tell stories about people of color we haven’t seen before. View Denzel’s work

 

ABOUT LISA JANAE

 

Lisa Janae is a director, cinematographer, actor, and editor from Los Angeles, CA. She has most recently co-starred on CBS in the shows FBI: Most Wanted and Law and Order: Organized Crime. Lisa moves with intention and is drawn to create art centered in the black, LGBT+ cultural experience. She is a SONY Alpha Female+ grantee, and her film work behind the lens has been featured on Amazon, Hulu, TedED, AfroPunk, The Los Angeles Herald, and other outlets. terravisuals.com

 

 

ABOUT CRAIG T. WILLIAMS

Craig and his extraordinarily beautiful and patient wife are approaching their 20th wedding anniversary. They have a spirited 16-year-old son and they make their life in the heart of New York City. Craig serves on the Board of Directors of FilmShop, a Media Producers and Independent Filmmakers Collective. He is also a member of the Harlem Dramatic TV Writers Workshop and the Black TV and Film Collective. Craig is a screenwriting mentor for the Craft Institute, the Writers 50/50 Screenwriting Fellowship, and for Reel Works, a teen filmmaking program in Brooklyn. Craig’s one-hour TV pilot “How Ya Like Me Now”, about the 80’s rap rivalry between Kool Moe Dee and LL Cool J, won 2nd Place in the 2020 Page International Screenwriting Competition. It was also a finalist in the 2020 Film Independent Lab, 2020 Cinestory TV Retreat & Fellowship Competition, and the 2020 Stowe Story Lab Fellowship.  It was also selected for the 2019 IFP Episodic Lab. And was a finalist in both the Sundance 2019 Episodic Lab and the 2019 Tracking B TV Writing Competition. His feature screenplay “Hanging By A Thread” is about a man diagnosed with bipolar disorder who doesn’t believe in taking medication, but when he discovers his 11-year-old nephew has the same condition, he kidnaps his nephew to show him a life free of pills. This project will be directed by Rosalyn, Craig’s wife and it has Viola Davis attached as Executive Producer. “Allergic” a 30 minute comedy, won the ABFF/Turner best original 30-minute comedic pilot in 2018. It also made the 2nd round of Austin Film Festival. His latest 30-minute pilot “Call Me Daddy” about an emotionally stunted 40-year-old Black man, tired of waiting for Mrs. Right, who decides to have a baby on his own to be the father he never had,” has won praises from industry execs. He is currently working on a new Black family drama and a Christmas movie musical. Craig has traveled the world. He loves tennis and makes a kick-ass Mac and Cheese that has brought guests to their knees. redwallproductions.com

 

ABOUT YHÁ MOURHIA WRIGHT

Yhá Mourhia Wright is a bicoastal, multi-hyphenate artist from San José, CA. In May 2016, she graduated with her MFA in Acting from the Actors Studio Drama School. Upon graduation, she founded her production company, YháWright Productions, and developed the company’s first original series, #LoveMyRoomie, now streaming on Amazon Prime Video. During her previous time as the Senior Video Producer for MadameNoire, she simultaneously led production for three digital shows: Listen to Black Women, In This Room, and Healthy Her.

Yhá Mourhia has had the pleasure to interview beloved talents such as Kim Fields, Robin Givens, Dawn-Lyen Gardner, Ester Dean, and Emil Wilbekin. Additional Credits Include Spot A True Period Piece (Short Film, Producer, Assistant Director); Pillow Talk streaming on BET+ (Supporting); It Stays Here (Short Film, Writer/Producer); The Basement (LABryinth Theater Company, Writer). Her most recent podcast, Inside Out Podcast, can be found on iHeart Radio, Spotify, and Apple Podcast. She is currently the Programs Director of the Black TV & Film Collective. YhaWrightProductions.com

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