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8 New Scholarships ​for Caribbean Film and Television Producers

Bridgetown, Barbados, 22nd May 2015. For Immediate Release CaribbeanTales Worldwide Distribution (CTWD), the region’s premier distribution platform for Caribbean film and television content, has received a 3-year funding commitment to provide eight partial scholarships a year to regional audiovisual content producers to attend its renowned CaribbeanTales Incubator Program (CTI). The funding is provided by the REACH Project — an initiative of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) in collaboration with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), Compete Caribbean (CC), and the Young Americas Business Trust (YABT) — that aims to develop sustainable income streams through the monetisation of intellectual property. “CTWD’s impressive work in the Caribbean region is perfectly aligned with the REACH’s goals in improving the monetization capabilities of producers of creative content. The Caribbean region is bursting with creative talent which with guided mentorship and assistance can turn creative intellectual assets into strategic tools for generating and maximizing new revenue streams. We look forward to a fruitful partnership.” said Ignacio L. De Leon, Innovation Lead Specialist, IDB.

Producers and Mentors at CTI 2014: From L-R: Chartrisse Dolabaille (S. Lucia/Canada), Dr Rita Deverell (CTI Producer and Mentor), Melissa Gomez (Antigua/U.S.A), Camille Selvon Abrahams (Trinidad & Tobago), Faisal Lutchmedial  (Trinidad/Canada), Rodney Smith (Barbados), Peyi Guzman (Dominican Republic) Rene Holder (T&T), Jelani Nias (Jamaica/Canada).

Now in its 6th year, CTI is a year-round program that supports the development, production, and monetisation of strong, original, world-class content from the Caribbean and its Diaspora. The Program, that kicks off every year during the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), is a training and production platform that brings together audiovisual content producers to hone their craft and business skills in the context of an international market environment. The competitive incubator program, which has already hosted over 60 filmmakers from around the region and diaspora, has three distinct parts: it begins with one month of online market preparation followed by a week of intensive workshops and networking opportunities in Toronto during TIFF. This culminates in the CTI Big Pitch, where participants pitch their developed projects to industry professionals over a delicious Caribbean breakfast at the TIFF Bell Lightbox. Finally, three winners graduate to the CTI Production Support phase, where they work with experienced international producers over the course of a year to take their successful projects from pitch to production. “This groundbreaking partnership is a perfect fit with the goals of CTWD and in particular, the CTI program: to monetize the intellectual property of audiovisual content producers, so as to encourage the growth of creative entrepreneurship throughout the Caribbean region and Diaspora,“ said Dr Keith Nurse, Chair of CTWD and the region’s leading cultural industries specialist.
Dr Keith Nurse

Dr Keith Nurse, Chair of CaribbeanTales Worldwide Distribution

The new funding builds on the important work of CTWD’s 3D Distribution Project, a 3-year initiative financed in part by the ACP Cultures+ Programme of the European Union. 3D aims to build capacity for the regional film and television industry through the creation of sustainable income streams and distribution networks. “These trailblazing partnerships come at a time when the Caribbean region needs them most, offering a viable answer to the region’s core struggle – the need to diversify its economies and find alternatives to more traditional industries like agriculture, banking, and tourism,“ Dr. Nurse concluded. ******* For more information about the CaribbeanTales Incubator Program, the REACH/CaribbeanTales Scholarships, and to apply to the CTI please visit


REACH is a recently approved regional technical cooperation project funded by the IDB’s Regional Public Goods initiative aimed at building the commercialization capabilities of competitively selected Caribbean entrepreneurs and firms. The project will provide institutional capacity building, training, and mentorship in three main thematic areas: (i) technology commercialization (ii) creative industries intellectual asset management and (iii) product branding value capturing. Efforts are expected to result in improved commercialization of intellectual property rights that would transform intellectual ideas into profitable business models thereby narrowing the productivity gap of Caribbean entrepreneurs relative to global competitors and capturing more income opportunities for these firms. The REACH project is being executed by the University of the West Indies with financing from the IDB’s Regional Public Goods Initiative and a growing number of partners which include the World Intellectual Property Organization, Compete Caribbean, CaribbeanTales, Connect Americas, and the Young Americas Business Trust.                    


The ACPCultures+ Program is implemented by the Secretariat of the ACP (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific) Group of States and funded under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF) by the European Union. Its objectives are: to reinforce the creation and production of cultural goods and services in the ACP States (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific) through an approach integrated with distribution networks; to support increased access to local, regional, intra-ACP, European and international markets; to build the capacities of culture sector professionals in ACP States, and to improve the regulatory environment of the culture sector. With the financial contribution of the European Union and the assistance of the ACP Group of States.  


CaribbeanTales (CT) is a group of media companies that produces, markets, and exhibits Caribbean-themed films and television programs for regional and international distribution, including: CaribbeanTales Worldwide Distribution (CTWD),  the first full-service film distribution company in the English-speaking Caribbean.  As well as distribution, CTWD provides co-production services to producers of Caribbean-themed content. CT’s other activities and brands include : CaribbeanTales Inc a registered Charity in Toronto, Canada;  the Caribbean-Tales International Film Festival (CTFF) that produces events around the world, the CaribbeanTales Incubator program (CTI), that develops original sustainable content for the international market, CaribbeanTalesFlix, our production arm, and CaribbeanTales-TV, a video on demand platform.

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