Wed, Oct 29th 2008, 12:00 AM
The Bahamas Squash Racquets Association (BSRA) will be holding the 2008 Bahamas Squash Championships from November 13th - 16th at The Squash Club on Village Road.
There will be five categories of play: Men's Open, Men's Vets 45 - 55, Men's Vets 55+, Women's Open and Women's Vet's. The deadline for entry is November 8th with an entry fee of $45.00. KPMG will be sponsoring this event.
Written by Tim Aylen
Mon, Oct 20th 2008, 12:00 AM
The Bahamas may be on the verge of a bonafide film production industry with the country?s first international film release, Rain.
Rain, written and directed by Maria Govan, was screened at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) this month, garnering positive reviews. ScreenDaily.com predicts that Rain will land on the schedules of many more film festivals.
?The film can expect bountiful festival play as a Bahamian trailblazer and the local music and acting talent on show can only serve to help its overseas prospects, although the strong island dialect is often difficult to decipher and might need some subtitling,? said Mike Goodridge in his Screen Daily review. ?Fourteen-year-old newcomer Renel Brown, who has never acted before, is winning in the title role of Rain, a 14 year-old living with her grandmother Rosalie on the tiny Ragged Island in The Bahamas.?
Chris Mortimer, one of the executive producers of Rain, noticed an ?extremely positive? reaction to the film from TIFF audiences. He pointed out that Rain received a lot of ?good? press, sparking great potential for future Bahamian films.
?I think we are beginning to see the creation of a true Bahamian film industry,? Mr. Mortimer said. ?I am talking about films that are written, directed, everything by Bahamians.?
Rain is an example of what Bahamians can accomplish on the international scene, he said.
There have already been inquiries by four filmmakers and writers, who are interested in having projects funded by Bahamas FilmInvest ? another Rain executive producer.
Owen Bethel of Bahamas FilmInvest said Rain is motivating Bahamian filmmakers, who are awakening to the possibilities of The Bahamas? emerging film industry.
?Certainly, there is great pride in recognizing that the film industry in The Bahamas has reached a landmark in that this is the first Bahamian-produced film being recognized by a film festival,? Mr. Bethel said. ?This is the Toronto Film Festival, the second largest film festival, behind only Cannes.?
Rain has already been engaged as a feature film of the Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF) in December. Meanwhile, Bahamas FilmInvest is also working with another Bahamian filmmaker, Kareem Mortimer, who recently completed filming his Daybreak on location here.
?It will certainly take a while,? Mr. Bethel said about the maturation of a Bahamian film industry. ?I would be cautious and say that we are in the embryonic stage. But it is critical that we nourish it.?
As the film industry grows, the star of Rain, Renel Brown, is prepared to take on more film challenges. The eleventh-grade C.V. Bethel student along with her mother traveled to TIFF with Bahamas Film Commissioner Craig Woods for the series of screenings and peripheral events. The experience whetted her appetite, she said.
?It was incredible. It was memorable,? Renel said. ?To see yourself on the screen for the first time is kind of strange because you are not used to seeing it. But as the movie went on, it got better.?
Rain has a cast that is comprised largely by Bahamians. Veteran American actresses C C Pounder and Nicki Micheaux also appear in the film.
The film was screened on Saturday, September 6th, at AMC 6 Cinemas downtown Toronto to a crowd of over 300 people. Renel and the other actors in attendance received several standing ovations for their performances. The "After Party" was held at one of Toronto' trendy spots, Six Steps, attended by a number of distributors and film sales agents who could potentially purchase the film for distribution in worldwide cinemas.
Visit Screendaily Magazine's website at the link below to see an online review of the film.
Written by Bahamas Ministry of Tourism
Fri, Oct 17th 2008, 12:00 AM
The Cuban ambassador to The Bahamas, Jose Luis Ponce is criticizing the US government for maintaining the embargo against his country despite the $5 billion in damage it received as a result of direct hits from Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.
He told the media Thursday morning at a news conference at the Cuban Embassy that about 444,000 homes were damaged by the storms with 63,249 residences being destroyed. The US embargo against Cuba has existed for more than four decades.
"Despite the call of the international community and many in the United States itself, the Bush administration insists on maintaining its genocidal policy of blockade. The Cuban government has requested the US authorities to allow, at least provisionally for some months, the sale of essential materials such as materials for roofing, for building repairs and for the re-establishment of electric networks," said Mr. Ponce.
"It has also requested, at least temporarily, the suspension of the restrictions preventing US companies from providing private commercial credits to Cuba for the purchase of foodstuffs in that country. Cuba has not asked the government of the United States to give it anything for free ? simply to be allowed to buy what is critical for the recovery after being hit by such a serious and devastating natural disaster."
The storms hit the island nation within eight days during late August and early September.
Cuba is about to present its 17th consecutive draft resolution to the United Nations General Assembly on the need to end the embargo on its country by the US.
This year?s Cuban report estimates that the embargo has caused $93 billion dollars in direct economic damage to the island up to December 2007, representing 1.6 times the country?s gross domestic product and 12 times the Cuban foreign debt at the end of 2006.
"The most vulnerable sectors have been food and healthcare, with a direct impact on the life of all Cubans. Last year only, damages in the food sector exceeded $174 million," said Mr. Ponce. "Their impact is felt not only on the restrictions on the limited and conditioned Cuban imports of foodstuffs from the United States, but also basically on its negative impact on the food production for domestic consumption."
Cuba also estimates that $54 billion dollars in damage has been done to the island nation by what it calls aggression and terrorist acts perpetrated by the US government and its agents over nearly a half a century.
The report will be submitted to the General Assembly of the UN on the 29th of October.
An account has been set up First Caribbean International Bank for anyone who wishing to make donations to Cuban hurricane relief efforts.
The Embassy, which is located on Armstrong Street, off Dowdeswell Street, will also accept non-perishable goods.
By BRENT DEAN
Thu, Oct 16th 2008, 12:00 AM