ALÍ ALLIÉ and RUBEN REYES are independent filmmakers who have worked for many years to create positive imagery for the promotion and retention of Garifuna culture, language and heritage.
Alí Allié (Writer/Producer/Director)
Alí Allié is an independent filmmaker and cinematographer living in Los Angeles, California. Allié’s initial foray into the world of Garifuna culture began when he worked as a volunteer in an orphanage in Honduras run by a Garifuna man. A few years later, Allié returned to La Ceiba, Honduras to direct the first feature film relating to Garifuna culture and spirituality, “El Espíritu de mi Mamá” (Spirit of my Mother) which told the fictional story of a Garifuna woman’s spiritual journey of re-identification with her own culture. This film showed at many prominent film festivals and is in wide release.
Ruben Reyes (Writer/Producer/Director)
Ruben Reyes, a Garifuna scholar and educator, is the top trilingual expert in the Garifuna language and has a vast knowledge of Garifuna culture and history. He has taught Garifuna language classes in Los Angeles and has guest lectured at universities across the United States. In addition to designing the Garifuna clock and flag emblem, he has translated the national anthems of Honduras, Guatemala and the USA into the Garifuna language. He edited the first Garifuna trilingual dictionary (Garifuna-English-Spanish) which was published in 2012. He is a founding member of the Garifuna Hope Foundation and the Garifuna Museum of Los Angeles.
Bill Flores (Writer)
Bill Flores is a Garifuna writer from Dangriga, Belize. He is a scholar of Garifuna culture. He completed all of his early education at Sacred Heart School and Lynam Agricultural College. In the early 1970’ he migrated to the US to complete his education. His education was interrupted by his servce in the US Marines during the Viet Nam war. After his honorable discharge Bill attended Los Angeles Trade technical college. While attending LATTC he was a frequent contributor to the school’s paper Trade Winds. After graduation he enrolled at California State University at Dominquez Hills where he earned his bachelors degree in Business Administration. He is a member of Garifuna Writers Group in Los Angeles and currently serves as vice president of Garifuna Hope Foundation (GHF) a 501c non-profit agency. Bill has recently completed the novel “One Hand Cant Clap”. This novel deals with the strained relationship between the Africanize populations of Belize Garifuna and Creole.
Ben Flores (Assistant Producer)
Ben Flores, graduate of National University with a B.Sc in Computer Science, is curator of the Garifuna Museum of Los Angeles (GaMoLA) and co-owner of Rootz Novelties along with Buck Pastor & Kamali Flores, a source for Garifuna-themed clothing, crafts and accessories. He is the son of the late Don Justo Flores, who was the author of such classics as The Garifuna Story, Now & Then and several pioneering studies on the reading and writing of the Garifuna language. Ben also was involved with his father’s music production, which included albums such as “The Garifuna Singers, Don Justo & Dolores Moralez, with the Ritmo Caribe Combo”, “Reggae Nuwanee 1”, “The Great Isabel Flores”, “Guribiyuwa”, “T.V. Ramos” and many more. Presently, Ben is a board member of Garifuna Hope Foundation, and is writing several Garifuna books including a Pictionary book teaching the names of Flora and Fauna in Garifuna.
Dudley Augustine (Associate Producer)
Also known as King Stamina, is a Belizean producer, promoter and investor who has produced Puntarock concerts in Belize and all over the United States. As a partner in Sta-Tic Productions with Vince “Aziatic” Lewis, they have released albums and concert DVDs of some of the best performers in Puntarock music. He is also the associate producer for the film “Road 2 Damascus”, which opened the 2011 Belize Film Festival.
Jorge Garifuna (Associate Producer)
Jorge Garifuna is a Computer Scientist who is best known in the Garifuna community for creating the Garinet.com and GariTV.com networks, and more recently for creating the Garifuna Dictionary and Basic Garifuna mobile apps for Android/iPhone. He has been honored for being an innovator and major supporter of the preservation of the Garifuna culture by Garifuna Empowerment Movement, Garifuna Film Festival International, Garifuna American Heritage Foundation United and Garifuna Coalition USA. He holds membership with various organizations such as Wafadaha Uwara and Garifuna Hope Foundation, as well as national technology organizations such as ACM and IEEE.
Teresa Reyes (Production Manager – Honduras)
Teresa Reyes is the head of the patronato in Triunfo de la Cruz, Honduras, where the film was shot.
Franzwah Estrada (Camera)
A talented musician, photographer, editor and director, Franzwah’s recent music video “Talking With God” premiered at the 2012 Garifuna International Film Festival and he is currently finishing a documentary about growing up Garifuna in Belize.
Angel Castillo (Camera)
A native of Triunfo de la Cruz, Honduras, Angel worked as video producer and cameraman for GariTV.com before moving to Spain to work in television.
Jennifer E. Jones (Assistant Director/Sound)
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Jennifer is a painter and studied psychology at U.C. Santa Cruz. She extends her artistic and organizational talents behind the scenes of this production.
Bahram Nadimi (Camera/Sound)
Studied film production at DeAnza College and has produced theater, and promoted cultural events for many years. He has been involved in the production of a few films including “El Espiritu de mi Mama”. He is interested in promoting musical events and was once a road manager for a rock band. His is currently a contributor of a website dedicated to blogs on harmony of science religion, and culture, civilization.
Alan Flagg (Production Assistant)
Alan (Brother) Flagg, aka Señor Butterfly in Honduras, has been active in the performing arts for many many years as an accomplished actor and founding member of the Watts Repertory Company, and The Paul Robeson Players of Compton. As a producer/director he worked with such Great Black thespians as Dick Anthony Williams, William Marshall, Ed Cambridge, Dick Gregory, Paul Mooney and Lincoln Kilpatrick to name a few. Brother Flagg is also a ‘Certified Gang Intervention Specialist’ and has taken community youth to Ghana, Timbuktu and Kemet (Egypt) and that story is currently in development to become a major motion picture. “The experience of living in a Garifuna village and warmth of the people there is something I will long treasure and cherish.”
Milton Güity, Jr. (Editor)
A partner with his brothers in Cool Journey Studios, a multi-media and video production company in New York City. Milton directs, shoots and edits shorts and music videos. He is currently finishing his personal documentary “I Am Garifuna”, which chronicled a recent trip to the Garifuna communities of Honduras.
Katherine Cumpa (Editor)
Katherine was born in Lima – Peru. She came to the U.S with the help of her brother and attended Millikin University in Decatur,Il. She graduated with a major in music business and a minor in communication. Katherine attended Richland Community College to get a certificate in multimedia, then continuued to graphic design and then motion graphics. The entertainment business has always held her attention. She likes being creative and participate on projects that can convey important messages. Presently, Presently, she works at WAND-TV in Decatur, IL. as a studio camera operator, and a graphic operator during the weekends. She also edit some short promos that runs before the night shows and also runs sounds for weather briefs, and direct the weather as well. On some occasions, she runs a prompter as well.
Marya Murphy (Editor)
Marya is an accomplished actress, having starring in numerous stage productions in the San Francisco Bay Area. She is also a producer, director and editor of numerous independent films, including Hegemony (2006), Canary (2009), Babnik (2010) and Amity (2012) in which she also stars.
Teofilo Colon, Jr. (Publicity/Bookings)
From dancing with Gregory Hines to Naughty By Nature to protecting Tyra Banks from paparazzi while escorting her to a movie set; he is a proud Garifuna American who’s led quite an interesting life professionally as filmmaker and blogger for www.beinggarifuna.com.