Barbara Makeda Blake Hannah

Kingston, Jamaica


BARBARA BLAKE HANNAH has worked in the film and television production industry for more than 30 years, beginning with on-the-job training in Britain as a current affairs TV reporter and interviewer-producer on THAMES TV (‘Today with Eammon Andrews’), BBC-TV (“Man Alive”), and ATV (‘ATV Today’). She was the International public relations officer for the 1972 launch of “The Harder They Come” in Jamaica, London and the Venice & Cork (Ireland) Film Festivals. From 1972-1986 she worked at jobs with the Office of the Prime Minister, Culture Division; Jamaica Tourist Board, Montego Bay Office; K.S.A.C., Director of Public Relations; the College of Agriculture, Portland; and served as Independent Senator in the Jamaican Parliament from 1994-1997. Barbara Blake Hannah is currently Director of the Reggae Film Festival held annually. She produced the 1974-77 Jamaica Film Festival, 1976 Cuban Film Week, CARIFESTA ‘76 Film Festival, 1985 Film Festival of the World Festival of Youth & Culture, as well as several Jamaican television programmes and interviews on entertainment and culture. The independent films she has written and directed for JAMAICA MEDIA PRODUCTIONS are: THE PEACEFUL GUN, (1977) Documentary co-production with GDR-TV, Cuban Film Institute; filmed in East Germany about the 21st Leipzig Film Festival. “RACE, RHETORIC, RASTAFARI, (CHANNEL FOUR UK - 1983); Award-winning documentary with interviews and commentary on British race relations; Music by Jimmy Cliff, I-JahMan Levi, The Rastafarians, Ras Messengers BY THE LAND WE LIVE – (JBC-TV - 1987); Student tutorial documentary on newly opened Jamaica College of Agriculture in Portland, featuring students as cast and crew. KIDS PARADISE 1– The Great Lost Treasure Hunt, (JBC-TV - 1992); Children's TV drama filmed at Jamaican North Coast hotel starring 4 children, Freddie McGregor, with songs by Susan Couch and Karen Smith. Film, director and 7-year-old star guests at 1994 Chicago Children’s Film Festival -Special Audience Award. KIDS PARADISE 2 – Shasta Runs Away, (JBC-TV - 1997); One-hour sequel filmed in Ocho Rios and Negril featuring six children, with adult stars Elise Kelly, Judy Mowatt. Screened at Auburn Film Festival, Sydney, Australia during 2000 Olympic Games. “THE MAKING OF ‘KLA$H’, (Kingston Pictures - 1998); Documentary included in DVD package about filming of Jamaican feature film starring Jasmine Guy, Giancarlo Esposito, Carl Bradshaw. Silicon Island – TechTV, (ISLAND FILMS Co-production - 2001) Pilot for a Jamaican Technology TV programme with host-interviewer Makonnen Blake Hannah, government Youth Technology Consultant. Filmed at James Bond Beach, Firefly, Golden Eye. ARTISTS IN DEVELOPMENT WORKSHOP – (UNESCO - 2002); 18-minute documentary on the 10-day Caribbean Music Expo retreat for 23 young Caribbean musicians and producers to learn professional skills from music industry experts, filmed and edited by end of Workshop. Screened on RE-TV. THE ROAD THROUGH THE BLUE MOUNTAINS OF JAMAICA (CPTC Co-production - 2003); 1-hour eco-documentary journey from Papine to Buff Bay through Newcastle, showing the unique attractions, sights, vegetation and people of the world-famous coffee region - Flash Point Film Festival, Jamaica; 2006 Mrs. Hannah has written 4 books: RASTAFARI - THE NEW CREATION, the first book on Rasta written by a member of the faith (1982); JOSEPH - A RASTA REGGAE FABLE, a novel inspired by the life of Bob Marley; HOME - THE FIRST SCHOOL, on her homeschooling experience; GROWING OUT - BLACK HAIR AND BLACK PRIDE, a biography of her youth in Jamaica and years in England. In 2011 she was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of her pioneering work in journalism and media by the British Entertainment Film, Television & Theatre Awards (BEFFTA). She is also the recipient of a United Nations Peace Medal (1974) and an Ethiopian Crown Council Adowa Centenary Medal (1997). Employed: Managing Director, JAMAICA MEDIA PRODUCTIONS Ltd.; registered as a Film Production Company since 1983.