Saltwater

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Synopsis:

A poignant short film about two Caribbean American children grappling with their identity, belonging and culture. After the death of their mother and wife, the Brathwaite family embarks on a weekend trip to Barbados to mourn with family. Tensions simmer beneath the surface as 18-year-old Ram grapples with her mother’s absence, her father’s emotional distance, and the pressures from her grandmother Martine, and her traditional values. Through encounters with local DJ Anthony, she finds solace in dance and music, while discovering new connections with the island’s vibrant culture. Meanwhile, her younger brother Tashawn seeks understanding and recognition from his father amidst family conflicts; he leans on his grandfather Michael, for support, which in turn negatively alters their relationship. Against the backdrop of the island’s beauty, the children navigate their own journey of self-discovery, connection and is forever changed by their time in Barbados. Ultimately, confronting their differences they learn to embrace the power of love and unity in the face of adversity.

Purpose:

“SALTWATER” delves into themes of death, love, identity, and cultural assimilation, weaving a poignant narrative centered around Caribbean American children navigating their heritage and a new environment. Dexcee’s vision for the film includes shooting on location in Barbados to maintain authenticity, complemented by emotive visuals, authentic performances, and a soul-stirring soundtrack featuring local artists.

Bio:

Director: Dexcee Lowe

Dexcee Lowe, a Caribbean-American Director pursuing her M.F.A. at The Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema, is passionate about bringing authentic representation of Caribbean culture to the screen. Born in America to a Barbadian parent, Dexcee’s experiences and frustrations with cultural differences inspired her narrative short film, “SALTWATER.” Amidst her graduate studies and the recent loss of her grandfather, Dexcee’s drive to create “SALTWATER” emerged, aiming to challenge stereotypes and advocate for underrepresented voices.

With a background in film production and a commitment to amplifying the voices of women of color and West Indians, Dexcee aims to use “SALTWATER” as a platform to celebrate Caribbean heritage and promote cultural understanding. Through her dedication to storytelling and her mission to create relatable narratives, Dexcee looks forward to sharing “SALTWATER” with the world and continuing to pursue her filmmaking goals beyond graduation in Spring 2025.

Producer: Jade Copeland

Jade Copeland is a multifaceted producer and video editor, bringing a unique perspective and experience to the film industry. As a Southern-born Black woman, she has a deep understanding of the importance of representation and diversity in media. Her passion for uplifting and empowering black stories is evident in her work and her mission to bring these stories to the forefront of film.

With 10 years of competitive hip hop dance experience, Jade has a strong artistic foundation that influences her creative decisions. Currently pursuing her MFA in producing at Brooklyn College’s Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema, she is well-versed in all aspects of the film and TV pre-production and development process. Jade’s internships at NBCUniversal for two semesters has provided her with invaluable industry experience and a deeper understanding of the inner workings of the entertainment world.

Director of Photography: Chukwuemeka Chukwurah

Chukwuemeka Chukwurah is a Nigerian-born cinematographer based in Brooklyn, NY. His work focuses on showcasing the diversity of stories from marginalized communities, stories navigating the immigrant experience, the meaning of “home,” and belonging in a body sometimes frozen between cultures. His work also seeks to explore the intersectionality of race, ethnicity, sexuality, and gender roles. Emeka has had the opportunity to work on film productions across the globe, including productions in Brazil, Sierra Leone, and Nigeria.

Chukwuemeka earned his doctorate at Arnold and Marie Schwartz College of Pharmacy in 2013. Having grown up in Nigeria and worked in the healthcare sector for a long time, Chukwuemeka’s cultural background and experiences have significantly shaped his worldview. This, in turn, has given him a unique perspective on storytelling and influenced his approach to teamwork and collaboration from pre-production to post-production.

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