“People tell me that my films have helped them to better understand their lives,” says Jamaican filmmaker Storm Saulter, who presents underrepresented voices onscreen, championing Caribbean talent and sharing Caribbean stories. Following stints studying and working in the US, Saulter returned home to renew his visa only to realise that his homeland had an unparalleled vibrancy. Since then, he has been committed to uniting local artists and filmmakers, and to propelling and helping shape a cinematic legacy for the region. From working with Usain Bolt, Lewis Hamilton and capturing footage of Jay-Z and Beyoncé, Saulter has already achieved what most filmmakers can only dream of.
His debut feature, Better Mus’ Come, focuses on life in Cold War Jamaica. It acted as a catalyst for him to seek out stories that were often left untold. The story of Jamaica in the 1970’s and its Green Bay Massacre in particular, was something that hadn’t been publically or artistically acknowledged. Better Mus’ Come’s dramatisation of real events required lengthy research, studying the evolution of the Patois language and retracing trials. “Most of my generation didn’t know about the massacre and others probably wanted to forget it,” he says.
His second feature Sprinter takes on another Jamaican story, this time it’s renowned track culture woven around family relationships. The film is executive produce by Will and Jada Pinkett Smith and is out at cinemas now.
Watch Sprinter trailer here
Interview by Olivia Atkins