Interviews: Director Darisha Beresford Talks About The Upcoming Thriller The Cutlass

Trinidad and Tobago-born Darisha Beresford is the founder of Blue Basin Films and a director at Zaftik Studios in South Florida. She has won numerous awards for her Caribbean and American films, commercials and television series. Her latest film, The Cutlass, out on VOD next month, tells of a woman who falls into the dangerous grasp of a sociopath, and is taken into the secluded jungle. She finds herself isolated in a world of natural beauty as she musters the courage to emotionally battle the unsettled mind of her kidnapper. 

TMS: Do you remember where you were when you came upon the project? 

DB: I was in my Car driving on the freeway in Miami, when my friend Teneille Newallo (Writer, and Producer) called me to tell me the story of this young woman. 

TMS: What was the initial appeal for you? 

DB: That it was based on a story in the Caribbean and from my home island Trinidad and Tobago. 

TMS: Did the project change, if even slightly, due to budget or other creative decisions, as the shooting date approached? 

DB: Yes, we had to cut a whole plot out of the film, for budget reasons. 

TMS: How long of a shoot was it? 

DB: 18 days Principal photography and 3 days with a skeleton crew, so 21 days in total. 

TMS: Was it local? Or were parts of it filmed all over? 

DB: It was entirely filmed on the north coast of Trinidad. 

TMS: Is it fair to say the film is a mix of genres? 

DB: Yes it is… Because it is based on a true story, we had to be careful not too create the film totally on a thriller feel, but rather an intense drama. 

TMS: How important is a social media presence for a film? 

DB: Very important, it is the first step to the marketing process… Social Media presents should start as early as possible. 

TMS: What’s one thing people probably don’t realize about making indie films? It’s not easy, right!? 

DB: My advice would be to stay focused on your dreams and goals! It may take time, but nothing comes easy. Filmmaking is hard work but with the right attitude anything is possible. Also collaboration is key, surround yourself with people who inspire you and push you to be your best. 

TMS: And when does the job end for you? 

DB: As long as there is interest in the film, the job never really ends. 

TMS: What’s the goal here? Make some money? Get another job? Give the world the next cult classic? 

DB: The goal is to make films that are culturally diverse and unique in all genre’s. My recent work explores Caribbean and Caribbean American stories but will not be limited too.