* As Haiti continues to emerge from insurmountable tragedies, the Hollywood filmmaker Jacquil Constant is in a fight to change the narrative of Haitian society. He is motivated to create projects that address the rich heritage of Haitian culture and intends to build a sustainable community through the arts to present a different image of Haiti and the Haitian diaspora.
News from Haiti in recent weeks has included violence, corruption, political fallout, the recent attack on First Lady Martine Moise and the appointment of President Jovenel Moise.
Constant, who condemned the targeted attacks, said he was shocked and also recalled the many black men who have been killed by police brutality in the United States. He says it’s like black men have no protection in this society.
Jacquil Constant: “As a Haitian American, to think how the president of my native country was killed like an ordinary person on the streets is an injustice to all Haitians at home and the Haitian diaspora.
Constant says it’s hard to see someone who looks like you get eradicated because of their political views. Yet he says we continue like it’s just another day. He believes the attacks were at the center of weak infrastructure and argues that Haitians must learn to work together to enable the nation to be prosperous and strong.
Jacquil Constant: “I think it’s time for Haitians to rebuild a stronger society through education and the economy. It is time for Haiti to become the dream of our ancestors and become a strong independent nation.
Constant is the good son of Haiti, and a lawyer who intends to fight the stereotypes of Haitians. Negative images on mainstream media are what prompted Constant to create the Haiti International Film Festival. As founder and managing director, Constant leads the development, promotion and implementation of all festival activities.
The festival promotes cultural diversity through short films, documentary and narrative films. Submissions come from all over the world. Selected entrants include award-winning and emerging filmmakers. The festival is a premier opportunity and platform for Haitian artists to showcase their work in Hollywood.
MORE NEWS ON EURWEB: Popular tea company sued after black women failed drug test [VIDEO]
As he prepares for the 6th Haitian International Film Festival on August 14, Constant hopes to bring communities together to share and experience a new generation of storytelling. He made it clear when speaking to Guest columnist for EURweb Germany Kent.
Jacquil Constant founded the festival five years ago and his career spans over twenty years in the entertainment industry. Constant has worked at MTV, BET, VH1 and PBS. Constant organizes and collects Haitian art and enjoys films that showcase the potential and brilliance of African diaspora culture. Constant says it’s nice to create a Haitian film ecosystem to create a more sustainable industry.
Jacquil Constant: “Being able to make an impact on someone’s life means a lot to me as a filmmaker, executive director and film teacher. This is why I produce social realism to portray the humanity of the society.
Added to these initiatives is Constant’s commitment and versatility as an educator and producer. As a third-generation entrepreneur, the businessman says he chooses not to talk about the hardships of being a black executive, but instead focuses on strategic planning, fundraising, dedication and advocacy. Constant thanks his mother and grandmother who trained him in customer service and building legacy businesses.
Jacquil Constant is currently in post-production for a feature-length documentary titled Haiti is a Nation of Artists. He’s not intimidated by big festivals and knows the expectations are high. Jacquil Constant’s passion for Haitian cinema and art is what drove him to create a platform that was absent from the Hollywood film industry. Constant says that the Haiti International Film Festival went global this year with the Cannes Film Festival through the unique venue Pavillon Afriques.
Constant insists the festival is for those looking to build many relationships to produce more films for the Haitian and African diaspora. The executive says the images of Haitians in Hollywood have changed because of great artists such as Jimmy Jean-Louis, Raoul Peck, Guetty Felin, Garcelle Beauvais and Bechir Sylvain.
Jacquil Constant: “Countless Haitian artists have contributed to Hollywood and the international community, which is why Haitian artists are celebrated for their artistic contribution to the film industry.
Constant has high hopes for the upcoming festival and wants him to be remembered as one of the best Haitian filmmakers to have produced films that have made an impact on the world. He expects the Haitian Film Festival to change the narrative of Haitian society.
Additionally, Constant values the power of collaboration and is committed to helping others succeed. The world has taken notice. Constant received the Caribbean Innovator Award and he received a Los Angeles Impact Award for his leadership at the Haiti International Film Festival.
Jacquil Constant: “I am happy to be the curator of the film which presents a different image of Haiti. I love giving opportunities to emerging filmmakers to showcase their work in Hollywood. “
Jacquil Constant is a graduate of California State University Northridge, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Film Production. Jacquil also obtained his Masters in Interdisciplinary Studies with a specialization in Pan-African Studies and Film, Television and the Arts.
At the time of going to press, the August 14 festival is taking place entirely virtual. The theme of the film festival is the The power of Haitian collaboration. For more information on Jacquil Constant and the Haiti International Film Festival, visit HaitiInternationalFilmFestival.org.
Germany Kent is a nationally unionized journalist. The former FOX News anchor, host, media personality and content creator writes as a guest entertainment correspondent for EURweb. Kent’s work has been featured in Inc., Forbes, Fast Company, HuffPost, Cosmopolitan, Yahoo, MSN, and countless other national media outlets. Kent is also an award-winning bestselling author and nationally recognized media expert.