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DC Caribbean FilmFest: WHEN MORNING COMES+ Q&A w/ filmmaker Kelly Fyffe-Marshall and producer Tamar Bird

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In recognition of Caribbean Heritage Month in June, AFI Silver is proud to once again host the DC Caribbean FilmFest, now in its 22nd year. The Fest is co-presented by the Caribbean Association of World Bank Group and IMF Staff (CAWI), Caribbean Professional Network (CPN), Institute of Caribbean Studies (ICS) and Africa World Now Project.

amal (Djamari Roberts), a young boy in Jamaica, has just been suspended from elementary school following an altercation. His widowed mother, Neesha (Shaquana Wilson), is so incensed she can't hear Jamal's protestations of innocence. Afraid this may become a habit and convinced that her mother in Canada may be able to provide more opportunities for a rambunctious, strong-willed kid like Jamal, she hatches a life-changing plan. Terrified by this, Jamal runs off, spending the next few days living with his best friend, Deshane (Jarden Crooks), the girl he's crushing on and substitute father figures, while also visiting the grave of his beloved father. Writer and director Kelly Fyffe-Marshall's gift for capturing complex, conflicting emotions is evident here, sparking comparisons to Euzhan Palcy's 1983 classic SUGAR CANE ALLEY. But what really stands out is the film's courage — and the director's willingness to explore painful themes no matter how daunting or heartbreaking.

Film followed by Q&A with filmmaker, Kelly Fyffe-Marshall and producer Tamar Bird