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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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BTFC End of Summer Mixer: Los Angeles

*Seats are limited; RSVP today to secure your spot for this exclusive event! * Vaccination is required.

The BTFC will beLIVE in Los Angelesfor the first time! Come mix and mingle with us on Saturday, September 17th at 3 PM PT at the Blackbird Collective for an evening of great conversation and networking.

 

Your ticket covers hors d’oeuvres catered by award-winning celebrity chef, Chef Qwith a tasteful selection of wines by 1010 Wines, a Black woman-owned wine company!

AND… we have BIG NEWS!

This mixer will feature members of ourADVISORY BOARDfor our very first LIVE session ofThe Download! 

If you’ve ever attended The Download, you know the line-up for this one will be INCREDIBLE!

Get ready to:

– Mingle and network with the Black TV & Film Collective team, board and members

– Learn more about upcoming programs and initiatives at the BTFC

– Gain insight and information from industry veterans

– Enjoy great food and great company

The Download LIVE: Activate Your Passion, Make Your Work

Meet our Panelists

Hilliard Guess is a writer/producer who has written on shows such as The Russo Bros SYFY series DEADLY CLASS and was recently the EP/Showrunner of the digital series TICKER (winner Best Series at the 2021 World International Film Festival). He has made a name for himself in the indie world and has built a strong career that’s made him invaluable, from managing sets and productions, in numerous writers/development rooms and producing TV/Film from script-to-screen.

Currently, Hilliard is the Director of Development at Showrunner Ben Watkins Blue Monday Productions. He is a powerful voice in the writing community, promoting BIPOC writers and inclusion and dedicates his time to the WGAW Co-Chair – Committee of Black Writers (he co-penned the viral article DEAR HOLLYWOOD ), serves as Co-chair of The Writers Education Committee and is also a member of the LGBTQ+, Latinx and Genre Committees.

Hilliard is building a name for himself across social media as the longtime host/moderator of the popular Screenwriter’s Rant Room, as well as the WGAW 3rd & Fairfax podcasts where he interviews A-list writer/producers from a long list of our favorite films and TV shows.

D. Woods has performed throughout the U.S. and internationally in Johannesburg South Africa, trained at the Alvin Ailey School, New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Acting Program and Study Abroad Dance Program in Havana Cuba. D. Woods received her Bachelor of Arts in Individualized Study through NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. She performed and toured with major recording artists and appeared in music videos, and ultimately became a household name in the pop/R&B group Danity Kane, songwriting and contributing creatively to both of the group’s multi-platinum albums. In 2009 D. Woods launched her independent label WOODGRANE ENTERTAINMENT, releasing music and producing live performances and visual content.

Returning to her theatrical roots, D. Woods has been featured in many Film/TV, Off Broadway and Broadway theater productions such as; acclaimed film BLACKBIRD by Patrick Ian Polk, , HOLLA IF YOU HEAR ME directed by Kenny Leon, her semi-autobiographical One Woman show “MY FAVORITE COLOR: Trouble in Paradise”, TALES on BET and most recently the seven-time TONY AWARD nominated Broadway revival of Ntzoke Shange’s ‘for colored girls…” Audiences can now see D. Woods the ALL BLACK streaming network series STUCK WITH YOU and Yha Mourhia Wright’s new film “DON’T BE DESPERATE”. Stream her latest music release CALL IT QUITS, available on all digital music platforms.

Denzel Whittaker

Born in Torrance, CA, Denzel Whitaker is best known for his award-winning role in THE GREAT DEBATERS, performing opposite his namesakes Denzel Washington and Forest Whitaker. Denzel has also graced the screen in film and TV fan favorites like BLACK PANTHER, CUT THROAT CITY, THE PURGE TV SERIES, WARRIOR, U SHOOT VIDEOS?, ABDUCTION, and TRAINING DAY.

In 2011, Denzel began developing his skillset behind the camera. Since then, he’s worked 5 years at Cartoon Network on hit shows including BOONDOCKS and BLACK DYNAMITE, became a published fashion photographer, and the music videos he’s directed have garnered millions of views.

Denzel founded his production company, BLACKMOUF, in 2013. His latest project, 5150, won SeriesFest’s Audience Award for Best Drama Pilot, and was selected for Tribeca Now and HollyShorts Film Festival. Directed and co-written by Denzel, 5150 stars Jovan Adepo, is executive produced by David Oyelowo, and is currently being developed as a TV series.

Don’t miss out! You want to be in the room with heavy hitters and up-and-coming filmmakers in the film industry!

Come dressed to impress! We look forward to seeing you there!

This event is open to all. 

Members, contact [email protected] for your discount code. 

Please Note: Tickets will NOT be sold at the door. Tickets are transferable, not refundable.

Proof of vaccination will be required in order to attend this indoor event. Masks are optional.

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

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Become a BTFC member today!

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