MEMPHIS, Tennessee — Live production and film is familiar territory for Chassidy Jade, the founder of ‘Crown Me Royal Labs’. She has worked in live production, television, and directing since 2009.
“I come from the inner city. I grew up in South Memphis, and I’ve never known anybody who knew how to work a camera let alone edit. Like that’s unheard of,” Jade said.
Her independent company works to train more people here in Memphis in the film and production industry.
She said a lack of exposure has contributed to a low number of people of color working in the film business.
“I didn’t even know what an editor was. I didn’t know what a gaffer was. I didn’t know how Hollywood works,” Jade said.
Now. for the first time, she’s bringing the ‘Crown Me Royal Film Festival’ to the Bluff City.
“Musicians have platforms, different artist have platforms, but when it came to film, design, and these types of experiences I didn’t see it,” Jade said.
From July 29 through July 31, aspiring filmmakers will get to work with and learn from industry professionals through panel discussions, celebrity Q & A sessions, and masterclasses.
“What makes Crown Me Royal Film Festival different is we take the competition out of it altogether. It’s collaboration over competition. So we’re not just focused on the writer, director, or editor. We’re focused on all the positions in Hollywood that can get you jobs,” Jade said. “The whole goal for this festival is to get people of color to see all of the jobs behind the scenes they wouldn’t normally see.”
During the festival two students will be awarded scholarships. The grand prize winner will get $1,000, a trip to Miami, a laptop or camera package, and they’ll get to intern with Crown Me Royal Labs.
More information on how to apply or volunteer is available on the Crown Me Royal Labs website.