Romola Lucas is the Co-Founder of the Caribbean Film Academy and the Managing Director of Third Horizon Film Festival.
Q. What should we know about you, Romola?
A. I was born in Guyana. I am a practicing lawyer. I have a background in environmental science with a concentration in geochemistry and almost got my PhD. I have taught in high school in Brooklyn. I love practicing law, I love the things that I do, and I love film, but I still each environmental science within the CUNY system. And in Guyana this year we collaborated with the Trinidad and Tobago Green Screen Festival to produce the first environmental film festival in Guyana. So everything is connected, at least for me.
Q. Why did you start the Caribbean Film Academy?
We started CAFA in 2012 because we realized that we weren’t seeing Caribbean films, but we knew they were out there.
Q. What kind of impact are you seeing Caribbean films have?
A. The artist Chronixx has a song on his new album that he says, even though Jamaica nice, you have to live to see the life. He’s saying it’s a ghetto paradise. and most ppl when they think of the Caribbean, they think of happiness, weed-smoking, partying, listening to reggae music, or soca music or carnival. sitting on the beach, and that’s typically the perspective you get from the Caribbean, and I would say that filmmakers are so against that type of filmmaking. They’re like, we want to tell stories about Caribbean life, but the Caribbean life that we know.
Q. How do you think Caribbean filmmakers see the Caribbean and its potential for storytelling, broadly speaking?
A. We’re living in your paradise, we live where you vacation and it’s a completely different experience living here and vacationing here, so I think that filmmakers are telling really authentic stories about what life is like in the Caribbean, and absolutely I think that as they continue to do that and continue to develop their storytelling skills, they are going to be telling stories that even though set in the Caribbean and about the Caribbean can transcend all of it