Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 18th 2014 Contents 10 Friday, July 18, 2014 • Issue 149
Before the screening, I was asked by Mar-
tin Mhando, Director of ZIFF, to introduce
"Wendy" and talk a little about Trinidad and
Tobago. Let me just say in my defense that I
detest public speaking and my nerves got the
better of me. After my introduction, I ambled
up to the podium and from what I have been
told, the only sentence that I could cobble to-
gether was, "Can we just run the movie ?"
So much for thanking the sponsors, or the hard-
working cast and crew, or the Trinidad and To-
bago Film Company for flying me to Zanzibar.
#shame. Hopefully, I get to make amends now.
That said, ZIFF ran both Wendy and Wendy 2
side by side in Ngome Kongwe , on a big screen. I
was grinning from ear to ear, and my only
thought was, I wished Heidi (Walcott, the lead
actor) was here to experience it.
A project that we had worked on for two years
brought to life and projected onto a screen in
Africa. Who would have thought? I can esti-
mate that we had around 800 people in the
ampitheatre, a mix of Zanzibaris and Mzungus.
Watching "Wendy" with the local audience trans-
ported me back to the days of Globe, with the
cheering and jeering and of course, the best part
is when the audience talks/yells/shrieks back to
the screen. It was awesome. Wendy ended and
we went straight into Wendy 2. If I thought I was
nervous when Part 1 started, ha, was I wrong. I
was nervous as all hell, my palms were sweating,
I had butterflies in my stomach. No one had seen
Wendy 2 before, how were they going to react?
Our Quirky logo ran, and the sponsor credits ap-
peared, but something was wrong. There was no
audio. Really? This is not happening. Do I sit
here in silence or do I cause a scene ? Hmmm... I
ran to the media station, quietly and through a
frantic mix of sign language and pointing I made
it known to the intern who was in charge (at the
time) that the film was playing with no audio.
Well as they say in this part of Africa "Hakuna
Matata," which translates to no worries, or in my
case, " keep yuh tail calm, cause we are trying to
fix the problem, so take it dong."
What seemed like a lifetime had passed, but it
was only about 10 minutes and the sound was
fixed and the film played. The irony is that in
Wendy 2 Simone's (played by Catherine Em-
manuel) television show is plagued by audio
problems. I can laugh now.
At the end of the film, the audience applauded
and I scurried off to get something to drink. The
ZIFF environment allows for interaction, audi-
ence members stopped me and asked questions
about the film, our Trini accent, about scenes
that they liked and their favourite characters
"the lollipop girl," said one local Zanibari, in refer-
ence to Sylvia's entrance in Part 1 with a red lol-
lipop. How the film touched on issues of inter
female dynamics in the work place and of course
the main question that I kept being asked was,
when is Part 3 coming out.
Filmmakers are a loopy bunch. I think this can be
attributed to the process of taking images that
you see in your head, then going through the gru-
eling filming process and ending up with these
images projected onto a screen for others to see.
The general public doesn't see what goes into
the production; the retakes, the rehearasals, the
reshoots, the ridiculously long hours, the clashing
temperaments of cast and crew while the dis-
covery is made that the Gummi Bear stash is
running low, and then an actor can't deliver the
line "Mimicry what's that?" due to sheer exhaus-
A lot of people work really hard behind the
scenes to make films happen. So I just want to
make sure and acknowledge everyone who
helped get Wendy 2 off the ground. I can say
that I am most grateful. It's an awesome time to
be a filmmaker in Trinidad, we have so many sto-
ries to tell, and so many stories that the world
wants to see.
Oh and one final thing, never eat the shellfish in
Forozani (It's a nightly food market in Stone
Town). The shrimp skewers may look appetizing
as they come off the grill and the intoxicating
mix of garlic and tamarind lure you to them. But
a lack of refrigeration has its downfall and I dis-
covered that at two o'clock in the morning but
that's another story.
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