Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 4th 2016 Contents trilogy based on the bestseller by
Mario Puzo. Puzo s book on the Cor-
leone family is based on stories he
heard about the mafia while he was
a magazine writer.
Then there s Martin Scorsese s
Goodfellas based on the non-fiction
book Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi.
The film narrates the rise and fall of
Lucchese crime family associate Henry
Hill and his friends over a period from
1955 to 1980.
Also, Brian de Palma s Scarface that
was written by Oliver Stone. The film
tells the story of Cuban refugee Tony
Montana who arrives in 1980s Miami
with nothing and rises to become a
powerful drug kingpin.
And there s Carlito s Way, also
directed by De Palma. It is based on
the novel written by Judge Edwin Tor-
res.The film follows the life of Carlito
Brigante after he is released from
prison and vows to go straight and
retire. But he is dragged into the same
criminal activities that got him impris-
oned in the first place.
What these four films have in com-
mon are the strong characters, the
violence associated with the dark side
and a femme fatale who pulls at the
heartstrings of the tough lead char-
acter. They were also blockbusters.
As far as Briggs is concerned, Dole
has these elements. Written by Tim-
othy Teemal, the screenplay was orig-
inally created for a US/UK team who
wanted to develop a movie in keeping
with the mafia/crime drama genre.
However, the project fell apart and
Teemal approached Ellis in 2012 to do
"Looking at the whole industry, the
film has to commercially viable. It has
to be about what people want to see---
not about two doubles and a solo, not
about a soca star," Briggs said.
"The film festival model is not fea-
sible. It has not worked. We bring
filmmakers to pat each other s backs
and nothing happens. "
Although, two local films coming
out of this year s T&T film festival
were shown at Digicel Imax.
"If you have an element to grip the
audience, the film will work. We
should get a cinema board to create
a standard for local film, looking at
production quality. The onus is on us
(the film producers, directors and
screenwriters) to make feasible stories,"
he added. "If Welcome to Warlock
(the 2013 movie by Jeffrey Alleyne)
had good production quality, that
would have been a box office hit. It s
time this country put out a real film
With Dole, Briggs intends to go all
out. Considering a budget of $12 mil-
lion, it would include shooting at loca-
tions that reflect the international
perception that a Caribbean drug lord
has a sprawling seaside property.
Bacolet, Tobago may be the locale for
Dole s home. Car chases are also
planned. The film will take one month
for production and two weeks in post-
When this is finished, more projects
are lined up. Next is The Flying Squad
which sounds like a biopic of the
crimebuster Randolph Burroughs. And
again Briggs says there may be sim-
ilarities but it is not about him. Fol-
lowing that is a romance titled Last
"I want to be known as a good film
maker. It is not about the audio visual
experience but an emotional experi-
ence," he said.
Churning out as many good movies
as possible is also part of formula. He
considers the local film industry
should work on a model different from
the Hollywood prescription. The Bol-
lywood (India) and Nollywood (Nige-
ria) models, he said, are more T&T s
"You have to create that environ-
ment of good movies. Short movies
are a waste of time. It s either a film
or a TV series. That is the only way.
The Film Company should sit down
with TV stations to find a platform
for this to work," Briggs said.
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, January 4, 2016
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there are instances of the Procurement and Supply of Goods and
Services without the issue of a valid Invoice Order (Purchase Order), a
practice that is in breach of Government procurement requirements.
Be advised that ALL PURCHASES OR REQUESTS for the Supply of
Goods and Services for the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force
(Regiment/Coast Guard/Air Guard/Defence Force Headquarters/
Defence Force Reserves) Must be supported by a duly authorised and
signed Invoice Order issued by the Finance Department of the Trinidad
and Tobago Defence Force. The Invoice Order must be signed and bear
the official stamp of the Staff Officer Finance.
Kindly Note that the TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO DEFENCE FORCE will
accept no liability for claims arising out of the Supply of Goods and
Services without the support of an approved Invoice Order.
Please be guided accordingly.
MAJOR GENERAL KENRICK MAHARAJ
CHIEF OF DEFENCE STAFF
TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO DEFENCE FORCE
Ellis Briggs, the man behind the movie Dole says the
film is not based on the 1990s Dole Chadee. He says,
"It's a contemporary story which happens to be
involved in a familiar story."
Creating an environment
for good movies Briggs' career in film making was inspired in
1980s by watching Horace James who
worked at the State media company TTT
(Trinidad and Tobago Television) and
produced the Play of the Month Series.
Before that, he met Penelope Spencer who
ran a theatre workshop at Barataria Junior
Secondary and it was there he fell in love with
the theatre and the arts. At Malick Senior
Comprehensive, he met Tim Cupid, a social
studies teacher who produced Towards
Broader Horizons, a recreation of Caribbean
history. "I decided to get more serious in the
early 90s," Briggs said.
He completed a course New York Film
Academy. Thereafter, he worked with Unicef,
he was also head of the Tempo network in
Trinidad. He worked with the New Zealand
government that supported a production
funded by the European Education
Development fund. That production featured
writers around the world. He also produced
music videos for French artistes.
ABOUT ELLIS BRIGGS
POUND THE ALARM
In 2012, Briggs' name surfaced as the man accused of stiff-ending hip-
hop maven Nikki Minaj. He was accused of receiving money for services
he did not render when Minaj came to Trinidad to produce the music
video for her hit Pound the Alarm.
Three years later, he maintains he did nothing wrong.
Briggs said the terms and conditions were agreed to but the production
manager (name called) said his prices were too high.
"In the United States the hourly rates are US$400-US$450. I charged
US$300. I tried to get a standard and they agreed to it. But the
production manager tied to cut costs and she tried to bully me.
"They said money was sent but nothing was sent. There should have
been a paper trail.
"Even the TT Film Company manager (name called) got involved and
told me that I was overcharging. I was not going to be bullied because of
an interaction between these two people.
"If we had an agreement, I was willing to make adjustments but not
bullied and gangstered. Nikki did not know what was going on.
"It created a problem. It prevented me from getting work. People like
the nice guy but I am trying to build a business. It's hard because you
cannot please everybody---what do I accept and what do I not accept?"
Continued from Page A25
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