This project began when I was living in China, towards the end of 2018 I met a woman from Jamaica whom I quickly became friends with. Kim and I held our first night in December, the Friday before Christmas. We had planned it to be held in a coffee shop/event space in central Chengdu; Berlin Haus. We decided on showing The Hate U Give and had set it up so that there would be food and a panelled discussion at the end. As a partnership we worked well together, Kim created the name and was going to be in charge of food; planning, shopping and prep. We offered jerked chicken wings with pitta and home-made popcorn. Kim was also the one that created the name which encapsulated our aims perfectly. My job was to source the movie, create the artwork for the poster and handle ticketing. The night ran smoothly and we received enough positive feedback to feel the whole idea had a good foundation.
Even though Kim and I cannot continue to be a good team on such an educational and creative idea, she's been nothing but supportive since my returning back to England and wanting to continue to educate and open discussion in a safe environment, through the medium of film. Holding the event from East to West has also shown me, that no matter where you are - trying to understand and wanting to talk about race and culture, through the primary safeguard of creativity - draws together a plethora of people from all ages, and many races, some with their own stories to share.
Doing a project like this in a place like China is very different to doing it in England. With research and talking to people in the know, I have now found, I'm in need of a license for every viewing I have, I would also like the funding to hire a larger location thank a coffee shop, and, I like to offer the incentive of free popcorn. If I can find a black owned company I can hold it I will do that, but that is also dependent on geography. I would also like to get a drinks licence for the event. so no matter where I pop-up, I can offer snacks and drinks.
Now it is about doing further research into location and licensing, the possibilities have now become greater with the opportunities that crowdfunding can make. And I can't wait to see how far this idea can go!