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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*.

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The Download featuring Pete Chatmon, Director (“The Flight Attendant”)

On Thurs. June 23rd at 4:30 PM PT | 7:30 PM ET, join us for another edition of The Download – a special VIRTUAL guest conversation series featuring impactful filmmakers who provide insider knowledge to help Black creatives make their work.

This edition we are in conversation with director Pete Chatmon (“The Flight Attendant”, “Insecure”, “Silicon Valley”). Pete will be discussing his work on The Flight Attendant as well as his journey as a Black director and the continued importance of diversity in the industry.

Meet Pete Chatmon

With a deft ability to balance both half-hour single-camera comedies and one-hour dramas, Pete Chatmon has directed over 50 episodes of television including HBO Max’s The Flight Attendant, Insecure, Silicon Valley, and Love Life, Netflix’s You, ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy and Black-ish, Starz’ Blindspotting, FX’s It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and the Apple TV+ series Mythic Quest. He is in development on The Education of Matt Barnes with Showtime, for which he will direct the pilot and serve as executive producer and is currently co-executive producer and producing director on Reasonable Doubt, the first project to be produced via Hulu’s Onyx Collective.

Chatmon’s career began in 2001 with the Sundance selection of his NYU thesis film, 3D, starring Kerry Washington. His most recent short film, BlackCard, premiered on HBO, and his narrative podcast, Wednesday Morning, engaged voters around the 2020 election. His podcast, Let’s Shoot! with Pete Chatmon is available on YouTube, iTunes, and all podcast platforms. In January 2022 his book, Transitions: A Director’s Journey + Motivational Handbook was released by Michael Wiese Productions. Follow him on Instagram @petechatmon and @letsshootwithpetechatmon.

Meet Our Moderator

Yhá Mourhia Wright is a 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. She has produced for MadameNoire and interviewed beloved talent 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). Yhá Mourhia recently completed her first short film, Don’t Be Desperate, slated to release in 2022. Her most recent podcast, Inside Out Podcast, can be found on iHeart Radio, Spotify, and Apple Podcast.

Meet our Panelists

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.

Writer and director, Eunice Levis is a first-generation Dominican American from the Bronx, New York. Eunice’s work focuses on genre-bending stories that combine her love of horror, sci-fi, thriller and fantasy, often through a diasporic lens. She is a two-time Sundance Lab Second Rounder, a Stowe Story Lab Fellow, and a Netflix/NALIP Women of Color Short Film Incubator Fellow. Eunice’s latest work includes INVADE, an environmental sci-fi short film and RO & THE STARDUST, a space fantasy short film. In addition to writing and directing, Eunice teaches and cohosts Café Negro con Genre, a podcast that promotes creatives working in the genre space. Eunice is a graduate of New York University and is managed by 3 Arts Entertainment.

Emeka Mbadiwe is an award-winning Writer/Director. With a focus in the area of storytelling, he has written and directed over 20 short films, many of which have gained millions of views on social media, with the highest viewed short film called Found Dead, hitting over 10.6 million views on Facebook. His films have been recognized nationally and he has been featured on many talk shows talking about the social issues in which his films tackle. His highly anticipated 6-episode Web-Series entitled, Bear Fruit has won an audience award from the Audience Awards Film Festival with 1,690 votes for most anticipated web-series in a pre-production category. Emeka focuses on creating films that inspire, educate, encourage and motivate his viewers to have hope.

Patrice D. Bowman is a New York City-based award-winning filmmaker and colorist with over six years of experience. Her films focus on the nuanced spiritual lives of women of color, particularly those of African-American women. She is the owner of the film production and post-production company Bowman Pictures. She received a B.A. in Film and Media Studies from Yale University. Currently, her experimental short adaptation of the Biblical Book of Ecclesiastes, Under the Sun After the Wind, is on the film festival circuit. Her previous short, Saturday Grace, was selected to screen at the Academy Award-qualifying Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival & Lecture Series. Her first short film, Lean on Him, won the Howard R. Lamar Prize Film & Video at Yale University in 2015. Her color grading work can be seen in a variety of places, from PBS Reel South to Nike.

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! This event will be recorded and the recording will be provided 48 hours after the event! RSVP today!

**Members, don’t forget to get use your SPECIAL CODE for your FREE ticket!

Questions? Contact [email protected] 

Become a member and get discounts for BTFC events! Visit www.blacktvfilmcollective.org/join

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Community Conversations Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union (Day 1)

On Wed. February 16th at 4:30 PM PT | 7:30 PM ET, join us for a FREE virtual conversation on activism in the Black community centered around HBO documentary series Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union.

You will be provided with a link to screen the docu-series in advance. Then we’ll gather for a conversation featuring Kerry Croft (Founder, The Vitamin M Box),Jaquial Durham (CEO, The Public Culture) and Shani Bellegarde as we delve into the impact of activism on our communities.  

The Obama Docu-Series

HBO’s three-part documentary chronicles the personal and political journey of President Barack Obama, as the country grapples with its racial history. Weaving together conversations with colleagues, friends and critics, and interspersed with his own speeches and news interviews, the series begins with Obama’s childhood and takes us through his perspective as the son of a white mother from Kansas and an African father, his spiritual formation by a generation of Black leaders, and his hopes for a more inclusive America.

Through the story of one man irrevocably bound to the history of a country, OBAMA: IN PURSUIT OF A MORE PERFECT UNION reflects on the country’s past and present national identity.

Special Guests

Kerry Croft was born in Kingston, Jamaica but raised in the south in Richmond, Va. She received her B.A in Fashion Merchandising and was working in the corporate fashion industry as Sr. Merchandiser for a licensing company where she developed Kenneth Cole Reaction Men’s Tailored Suitings. This contributed to the brand being the top earning multimillion dollar brand for the company. Using her keen eye for detail and merchandising background, Kerry wanted to branch out and start her own business that expressed her love of her community.

Kerry wanted to create not only an awareness for her customer base, but a new way for them to shop up and coming Black owned brands through her monthly subscription box service, The Vitamin M Box. Kerry is dedicated to making a lasting difference and to consistently innovate the talent discovery experience through uniquely curated platforms to shed a positive light on Black owned businesses and the importance of buying Black and pouring back into our communities.

Jaquial Durham is an entrepreneur, community organizer, and creative producer.⁠ As a creative producer and CEO of Public Culture Entertainment (@thepublicculture), Durham has developed a talent for including his passions at the center of his work. ⁠

Most recently, Jaquial was admitted into Clemson University doctoral program to produce his second documentary about the Black history and culture of Clemson and Clemson University, which is his hometown. ⁠To further ensure that Black culture is centered Jaquial has created Public Culture Collections, which is an historical archival clothing brand in collaboration with colleges and universities at predominantly white institutions (PWIs) located in small, Black communities.

Shani Bellegarde is a native Brooklynite with Haitian roots and a Digital Content Creator and Social Media Strategist for smaller brands and businesses. Shani started her career as an Analyst and Project Management Specialist for “Top 10” investment banks for a decade. In 2017, personal tragedy led to her leaving the financial industry to pursue a career as a Full Spectrum doula. Specifically supporting and advocating for Black birthing parents and families.

The pandemic forced Shani to shift in unexpected ways. Unable to interact with people and babies, she resorted to creating humorous content on Instagram. Shani is a graduate of Lafayette College where she obtained a BA in Government & Law. She’s able to marry her education and vast experiences in support of one theme: to advocate and amplify the voices of the Diaspora.

Be the Change

Nina Simone said it best, “an artist duty is to reflect the times”. Although much progress has been made, thanks to the hard work and dedication of our ancestors, there is still work to be done. This discussion will seek to explore themes within the documentary series and how we can bring change into our communities and is an opportunity to examine how we can be the change we want to see in the world. 

The Black TV & Film Collective continues to fulfill its mission – to provide opportunities for Black and African descent artists to achieve economically sustainable careers in all areas of content creation. 

 

 

 

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

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Community Conversations Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union (Day 2)

On Thurs. February 17th at 4:30PM PT | 7:30PM ET, join us for a FREE virtual conversation on activism in the Black community centered around HBO documentary series Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union.

 

You will be provided with a link to screen the docu-series in advance. Then we’ll gather for a conversation featuring Krishna Davenport (Founder, Baobab Wellness Collective),Jaquial Durham (CEO, The Public Culture) and Shani Bellegarde as we delve into the impact of activism on our communities.   

The Obama Docu-Series

HBO’s three-part documentary chronicles the personal and political journey of President Barack Obama, as the country grapples with its racial history. Weaving together conversations with colleagues, friends and critics, and interspersed with his own speeches and news interviews, the series begins with Obama’s childhood and takes us through his perspective as the son of a white mother from Kansas and an African father, his spiritual formation by a generation of Black leaders, and his hopes for a more inclusive America.

Through the story of one man irrevocably bound to the history of a country, OBAMA: IN PURSUIT OF A MORE PERFECT UNION reflects on the country’s past and present national identity.

 

Special Guests

Krishna Davenport is affectionately referred to as Professor K holds a Bachelor of Science in Economics and has been a mainstay on Wall Street for 26 years. Krishna is an activist spending her career as an advocate for equal treatment of Black Mothers in corporate spaces, more recently broadening her work through her nonprofit The Baobab Wellness Collective, where she focuses on the mental, physical and financial health of Black women.

In keeping a with her personal mission Krishna has organized rallies, moderated and spoken on panels geared towards advancement in the Black community, most recently taking on providing financial literacy classes in the New York City public schools. A Brooklyn native Krishna shares her life with her husband, and two loving boys.

Jaquial Durham is an entrepreneur, community organizer, and creative producer.⁠ As a creative producer and CEO of Public Culture Entertainment (@thepublicculture), Durham has developed a talent for including his passions at the center of his work. ⁠

Most recently, Jaquial was admitted into Clemson University doctoral program to produce his second documentary about the Black history and culture of Clemson and Clemson University, which is his hometown. ⁠To further ensure that Black culture is centered Jaquial has created Public Culture Collections, which is an historical archival clothing brand in collaboration with colleges and universities at predominantly white institutions (PWIs) located in small, Black communities.

Shani Bellegarde is a native Brooklynite with Haitian roots and a Digital Content Creator and Social Media Strategist for smaller brands and businesses. Shani started her career as an Analyst and Project Management Specialist for “Top 10” investment banks for a decade. In 2017, personal tragedy led to her leaving the financial industry to pursue a career as a Full Spectrum doula. Specifically supporting and advocating for Black birthing parents and families.

The pandemic forced Shani to shift in unexpected ways. Unable to interact with people and babies, she resorted to creating humorous content on Instagram. Shani is a graduate of Lafayette College where she obtained a BA in Government & Law. She’s able to marry her education and vast experiences in support of one theme: to advocate and amplify the voices of the Diaspora.

 

Be the Change

Nina Simone said it best, “an artist duty is to reflect the times”. Although much progress has been made, thanks to the hard work and dedication of our ancestors, there is still work to be done. This discussion will seek to explore themes within the documentary series and how we can bring change into our communities and is an opportunity to examine how we can be the change we want to see in the world. 

The Black TV & Film Collective continues to fulfill its mission – to provide opportunities for Black and African descent artists to achieve economically sustainable careers in all areas of content creation. 

 

 

 

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

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‘A Black Lady Sketch Show’

On Thursday, Aug. 26th at 5 PM PST | 8 PM EST; join us in a conversation with editors of the hit Emmy-nominated HBO comedy A BLACK LADY SKETCH SHOW

 

This panel features the women making history:  Daysha Broadway, Stephanie Filo, and Jessica Hernández. This is a panel you don’t want to miss, hosted by Hollie Harper the creator and co-exec producer of Hella Late! with Hollie Harper on BRIC TV and a co-host of the nationally trending Twitter Storytelling Chat “BlerdDating.” Daysha, Stephanie, and Jessica make up the first-ever all-women of color editing team nominated for an Emmy and want to tell you their stories of how they got into the business, the highs and lows of Hollywood, and how to find your passion and tribe. Expect a hilarious evening with these ladies!
Our discussion will be followed by an audience Q&A – see you there! 

 

ABOUT HOLLIE HARPER

Hollie Harper is a comedy nerd from South Jersey. She is currently the creator and co-exec producer of Hella Late! with Hollie Harper on BRIC TV and a co-host of the nationally trending Twitter Storytelling Chat “BlerdDating.” Hollie has been featured on NY1 and in Black Enterprise Magazine, Thrive Global, and Confessional Magazine.
Her popular sketch comedy show AMERICAN CANDY has played the Comic Strip, Gotham Comedy Club, BAM Café as well as the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival.  Time Out Chicago named them one of the five groups to watch.
Hollie is a regular host for West Side Comedy Club and works with Gold Comedy and Stand Up Girls, two programs that empower young women by teaching them standup comedy. She is also the Creative Director of the very successful Black Women in Comedy Laff Fest. Subscribe to her YouTube Channel

 

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