Frances-Anne Solomon

5 01 2009

DSC_0934Frances-Anne Solomon is an accomplished filmmaker, writer, and producer in film, TV, radio, theatre, and new media. Born in England of Trinidadian parents, she was raised and educated in the Caribbean and Canada before moving to Great Britain where she built a successful career with the BBC as a TV Drama Producer and Executive Producer. Since her return to Toronto in 2000, she has continued to create, write, direct, and produce her own projects. Her most recent film, A Winter Tale, has received many prestigious international awards, including most recently at FESPACO 2009 (Africa’s Oscars held biannually in Burkina Faso West Africa) where it was nominated for, and won Special Mention in The Paul Robeson Diaspora Category.

Her other directing credits include the feature film Peggy Su! (BBC Films, 1997); the drama What My Mother Told Me (Channel 4 1995), and Bideshi (British Film Institute 1994); and documentaries Literature Alive (Bravo!/OMNI, 2006), Reunion (BBC,1993), and I Is A Long Memoried Woman (Arts Council of England 1991).

She is currently developing a new feature film project, based on her critically acclaimed theatre play LOCKDOWN that launched at the Toronto Fringe Theatre festival 2009.
As well as directing, Frances-Anne is the Artistic Director and President of the two companies she founded, Leda Serene Films, her film and television production vehicle, and CaribbeanTales, a prolific not for profit company that makes multimedia products aimed at the educational market.
Most recently she created, produced and directed the multi-facetted Literature Alive and HeartBeat projects, comprising 35 documentaries exploring the life and work of Caribbean authorsand composer/musicians from the 60’s through the hip-hop generation (for Bravo! CLT, BookTV, and OMNI TV); a series of audio books (for the Trillium Foundation), and the DCH funded educational website.

She was the Co-creator, Producer and Director of Lord Have Mercy! Canada’s multi-cultural hit sitcom, which aired on Vision TV, Toronto/ one, Showcase and APTN in 2003 and was nominated for two Gemini Awards: Best Comedy series, and Best Individual Performer (Leonie Forbes)

She is the Founder and curator of The CaribbeanTales Annual Film Festival Canada’s one and only forum showcasing the best of Caribbean cinema from around the world, now entering its fith year.
This year 2009 marked the launch of another Frances-Anne Solomon project – The CaribbeanTales Youth Film festival Celebrating Black History Month, a unique screening series that showcases Africentric films for high school and university students.

As a Producer and Executive Producer for BBC TV Drama & Films in the 1990’s, Frances-Anne was responsible for several strands of films and TV movies including the Black Screen Strand, and Screen on the Tobe (with the BFI). Productions include Speak Like A Child, director John Akomfrah, Love Is The Devil, director John Maybury, The Sixth Happiness, director Waris Hossein, and Siren Spirits, directors Ngozi Onwurah, Pratibha Parmar and Dani Williamson.

She previously worked as a radio drama producer/director for the BBC, producing some 35 radio plays, and as a documentary researcher and director for The Bandung File (Channel 4) and Ebony (BBC2).

She studied Theatre at the University of Toronto with Steve Martineau and Ken Gass, and poetry with Jay MacPherson; and trained as a film director in the UK at Bristol University’s RFT Programme and the prestigious BBC Drama Directors Course.

Filmography

* LockDown, Feature Film, In Development, 2009. As Creator, Writer, Director.
* HearBeat, 2008, TV Series – as Series Creator/Producer, Director.
* A Winter Tale, 2007, Feature Film – as Writer/Director, Producer.
* LiteratureAlive, 2005-6, TV Series – as Series Creator/Producer, Director.
* Lord Have Mercy!, 2001-3, sitcom – as Director, Producer, Co-Creator, Co-writer.
* Love Is the Devil: Study for a Portrait of Francis Bacon, 1998, Feature Film – as Executive Producer

… aka Love Is the Devil (France) (UK: short title) … aka Ai no akuma (Japan)

* Speak Like a Child, 1998, Feature Film – as Executive Producer
* Peggy Su!, 1997, Feature Film, as Director
* Sixth Happiness, 1997, Feature Film – as Executive Producer
* Flight, 1995, Television Movie, as Executive Producer
* What My Mother Told Me, 1996, Feature – as Writer/Director, Producer
* Siren Spirits, 1995, Mini-Series – as Creator, Series Producer.
* Bideshi, 1995, Short Film – as Director
* Reunion: West Indian Women at War, 1993, Documentary – as Writer/Director, Producer
* I Is a Long Memoried Woman, 1990, Documentary Feature – as Writer/Director.

Websites

Leda Serene Films
A Winter Tale
Newz Blog
CaribbeanTales
Lord Have Mercy
Leda Serene’s Myspace
A Winter Tale My Space
LiteratureAlive Online
Youtube Chanel
Flickr

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