ras tingleMichael “Ras Tingle” Tingling
Filmmaker
Jamaica
Studio Anansi Profile
Watch “Parish Bull

PARISH BULL,” a short film by Jamaican filmmaker, Ras Tingle, was made as a part of the first production in the New Caribbean Cinema Series, “Ring di Alarm.”  The New Caribbean Cinema Series,  is a fresh, pioneering approach to film-making in the Caribbean.  A mixture of ‘First World’ technical skill and business savvy flavored with a distinctly Caribbean world-view, the New Caribbean Cinema Series proposes to present the world with a showcase of creative artistry from the region’s up and coming filmmakers. The series is a Caribbean co-production, jointly produced by Storm Saulter of Jamaica and the St Lucian born Michelle Serieux. The productions relied heavily on the creative and technical support of Joel Burke and Nile Saulter and were sustained by the commitment and effort of the production crew, who worked at greatly reduced costs to help create a body of work representative of the capabilities of Caribbean filmmakers.

The complete film, “Ring di Alarm,” premiered at the BFI in 2012, and has since been screened at the Trinidad & Tobago Film Festival, and at several film festivals across the world. We asked Ras Tingle to share with us some of his experiences making the film and his thoughts on filmmaking in the Caribbean.

CineCaribés:
In your own words, tell us what this film is about and why you chose to tell this story.

RT:
This film is about a young man getting caught on the wrong end of his promiscuous behaviour.  Touching various aspects of Jamican behaviours and innuendos from the Kendal train crash.

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CineCaribés:
Did the film turn out the way you envisioned?  If yes, in what ways.  If no, why not?

RT:
Yes, I got most things I wanted. It’s my first film and I found that even after the editor chopped out an entire scene, it was still pleasing.

CineCaribés:
What was the most challenging aspect of making the film and why was that so?

RT:
Most challenging was the day before first shoot day, the female lead broke out in allergies after taking aspirin.  I decided to move the last day’s scene of the crash to the first day.  It was an uphill battle but worked like a charm.

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CineCaribés:
If you were to pick an aspect of filmmaking – producing, writing, directing, cinematography, editing – which would be your favorite?  why is that? – which do you dislike the most? and why is that?

RT:
I’d say cinematography, as I love taking things from the mind to real time. I’m very passionate about this.

CineCaribés:
If you did not have to think about a budget, what film would you make and who would you cast as the lead actors?  [ideal world question]

RT:
I’d make a Jamican version of Pulp Fiction, just to give the world a full taste of our culture.  And maybe I’d use Samuel Jackson as lead…who knows?

CineCaribés:
What do you want the audience to take away from this film?

RT:
I’d love the audience to get a taste of some of the stories we would hear our elders speak of. The Kendal train crash is almost forgotten and the funny storries around it are fading, so I’d love them to get a taste of some of the things that make us happy…sad…laugh..cry…all mixed in one.

CineCaribés:
Tell us a bit about yourself and how you became a filmmaker.
RT:
I’m a Granmas boy, raised in the country side of st James, Cambridge. I grew up with simple but effective methods.  I returned to Kingston to live with my father at age 18, where he sent me to refrigeration school. I worked in the field for 7 years and this is where I heard this story of Parish Bull.  I heard many different versions in the country, on the night before boarding the train to visit family. I later ran a black book store where I met other like minded Rastafarians. My Rasta brothers, Kassa and Asher brought me on a film set to cook for them as I’m always taking charge of things.
ras kassa and ras tingleRas Kassa and Ras Tingle on set

After two music video sets, they hired me as grip.  I worked my way up to directing music videos and content for cable tv. Its my passion now and I want to make more films and documentaries.


Ras Tingle’s film, Parish Bull is now available on Studio Anansi Tv.  Watch it now: