News Releases

The UWI Film Degree Programme: The Next Generation

For Release Upon Receipt - May 24, 2017

St. Augustine

The UWI St. Augustine’s Film Programme is readying for its second decade of production – no small feat for a programme which offers the only stand-alone film degrees (in Film Production and/or Studies) in the Eastern Caribbean.

 Over the three-year Bachelor of Arts degree course, beyond core production course offerings like directing, editing, cinematography,  screenwriting, sound producing etc., students are encouraged to develop interpretive and production skills, which involves an understanding of socio-cultural and historical dynamics, as well as the relationship between film and literary genres and other art forms like music.

Programme courses also include Film, Literature and Drama, which, with its focus on adaptation, has stimulated former and current students to engage with regional and local literature, bringing classic and contemporary texts to the screen.  Programme Coordinator and acclaimed Caribbean filmmaker Yao Ramesar notes “Over the years students would have produced dozens of film adaptations of indigenous writers. A number of their films would also have incorporated indigenous music for their soundtracks."

The eagerly awaited feature film adaptation of Michael Anthony’s classic coming-of-age novel Green Days By the River, now nearing completion, is a prime example of the Film Programme’s potential and benefits. Directed and produced respectively by former students Michael Mooleedhar and Christian James, Green Days highlights an integral aspect of the Film Programme’s focus and rationale: ensuring Caribbean realities and issues are represented in an increasingly globalized media, still dominated by Hollywood.

Of all the work by past students perhaps the best known is Roger Alexis’ Santana, the charismatic Trini puppet with millions of followers worldwide.  Nick Attin (for his three features – Little Boy Blue, Escape from Babylon and Tomb) and scholarship winner Stephen Taylor for his Buck-The Man Spirit feature are also staking their claim. Current student Amir Ali is a 2016 UN award winner in the documentary category and a TTFF 2016 short winner. Notable alumni include TV personality Francesca Hawkins and actor Michael Cherrie.

Since its inception, the Film Programme has produced numerous short and feature length documentary and narrative films, consistently garnering awards locally, regionally and internationally. Student and alumni films have screened at The Trinidad & Tobago Film Festival, the Belize International Film Festival and the Portobello Film Festival.  

For more information, please contact: The UWI Film Programme | #12 Carmody Street, UWI St. Augustine | 662-2002 exts: 82727/82725   |  | Facebook: UWI St. Augustine: Film Programme.

About The UWI

Since its inception in 1948, The University of the West Indies (UWI) has evolved from a fledgling college in Jamaica with 33 students to a full-fledged, regional University with well over 40,000 students. Today, UWI is the largest, most longstanding higher education provider in the Commonwealth Caribbean, with four campuses in Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Open Campus. The UWI has faculty and students from more than 40 countries and collaborative links with 160 universities globally; it offers undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Food & Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities & Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology and Social Sciences. UWI’s seven priority focal areas are linked closely to the priorities identified by CARICOM and take into account such over-arching areas of concern to the region as environmental issues, health and wellness, gender equity and the critical importance of innovation. Website:

(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.)