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Growth & Jobs | Creating jobs in film – Mango Girl to hire local talent

Published:Tuesday | January 16, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Author and motivational speaker Dr Ava Eagle Brown.

In a move to support the local film industry, writer and motivational speaker Dr Ava Eagle Brown said she will be targeting local talent for the production of her coming-of-age film The Mango Girl, which is inspired by the life of the Jamaica-born author. Brown made the promise during a recent visit to Jamaica. The Mango Girl project has now secured distribution through content production and distribution company D Street Media Group, led by international media executive Dexter Davis.

The film, which is estimated to have a budget of more than US$4 million, will be produced in Jamaica to maintain its authenticity and to support job creation in the film industry. Brown explained, "It was important to shoot this film in Jamaica because I want it to be authentic to my roots and home country, but also for job creation. More important, however, [it is important] to empower young writers and actors of the possibilities and position of Jamaica as a destination for other film producers."


Amazing potential


The author said that it was imperative to film in Jamaica to not only tell indigenous stories, but to boost the local film industry which she believes has amazing potential. "The film will aid in the creation of jobs, as our intention is to have as many Jamaicans involved as possible, and bring in foreign talent only where it's absolutely necessary. As a result, we will encourage local talent to stay here and embark on their careers," she said.


... Mango Girl production, an opportunity to create jobs


Film commissioner Renee Robinson said that JAMPRO welcomed the production of the movie The Mango Girl, as it will not only result in a Jamaican feature film, but will be an opportunity to create jobs in the local industry.

Noting that Jamaica was not short on talent to support the development of projects, Robinson said, "The JAMPRO Film Commission facilitated an open call and a round of production facilitation meetings for local professionals to express their interest in working on The Mango Girl. Through this process, D Street identified local partners in screenwriting/editing, production management, and soundtrack/music supervision."

The film commissioner added that the recently hosted visit to Jamaica by Ava Eagle Brown and D Street Media was a resounding success, and that JAMPRO was dedicated to continuing its support of the production process. She said, "In addition to other activities, D Street signed a five-year music-placement deal with John John Entertainment, to include contributions to the soundtrack of The Mango Girl. All in all, it was a hugely successful inward mission, which began last year with location scouting. Next step will be local casting! We look forward to Ava and Dexter's next visit to Jamaica and our continued production facilitation for the film."

The Mango Girl has a planned US theatrical release for late 2018, followed by an expected UK and international premiere shortly thereafter.