The National Screening Tour of Belize’s First Animated Movie
The national screening tour for Tecuani and Duende, Belize’s first animated movie comes to the Mexican Cultural Institute in Belize City tonight. It is one of the last stops for the tour after the first episode of the film has been across the length and breadth of the country. The film won at the Belize International Film Festival in 2019 and will compete in other festivals across the world. Writer, producer and director Lee McLoughlin spoke to News Five about the success so far.
Lee McLoughlin, Director, Tecuani & Duende
“It’s really important to us to give the proper respect to the story of tata duende. It means a lot to all the different ethnic groups of Belize. Like wherever you go in the country, people have a slightly different version of the story, but there are a lot of things that are similar, such as: no thumbs, feet facing backwards, small man, big hat, big beard. So wherever we’ve been, people have always been putting these out, but we also try to work with local storytellers. So where we have been doing screenings, we’ve been inviting local storytellers to come and tell the crowd their version of the story of tata duende first and then we show what’s our version of the story. It’s a more detail story than just duende, but different versions. We were really grateful to the film festival for the recognition for that. The music video, Raise My Voice, also won an award; it was by Theodore Spain performed by Nicole Craig. But next step for us, we want to make more episodes in this series. This is a longer story than this film. This is the beginning of a tale. So I think we might get about six more episodes from the story so we got to raise the money for those, get them made. We will be looking again to donors around Belize. We’ve had great support from Wildlife Conservation Society, Digi, couple of resorts and lots of individual donors from Belizean and international folks as well. I also want to mention that we were at the Belize International Film Festival, but we want to enter other international festivals. We’ve submitted applications to film festivals in Latin America: Chile, Panama and in North America, Canada, the States and even over in Europe—in the U.K., in Holland and Germany. So we have to wait to hear back whether we’ve been accepted. We’ve been accepted to one in U.K. so far, but what we want to do is take Belizean filmmaking onto the world stage and show what we can do here because this entire production is Belizean made.”