Director Storm Saulter tackles Caribbean complexities through film

Storm Saulter (Photo: Don Waysome)

Storm Saulter continues to ride major waves of accolades and good reviews as his latest theatrical release, Sprinter, opens across cinemas nationwide.

The Jamaican writer-director, in a tell-all interview with BUZZ, said that he’s pleased with the outcome.

“There [are] many stages to a film but that moment when an audience interacts with it, it takes on a whole new life,” Saulter told BUZZ.

Sprinter, a coming-of-age story following 17-year-old Rastafarian track athlete Akeem Sharp, opened in Jamaica on Wednesday, July 3 – after experiencing overwhelming success on the international market.

Sprinter is the story of a boy trying to run back to his mother

Saulter, the man behind Sprinter, speaks with BUZZ on location (Photo: Don Waysome)

Saulter said that much of his life growing up in Negril, Westmoreland is portrayed in Sprinter – with many relatable aspects of daily Jamaican life taking centre stage.

“A lot of my life growing up in Jamaica is in this film. I remember going to Manning’s’ High School in Savanna-La-Mar and I remember going to devotion every morning. That stuff is seared in me and my memory and I literally have that entire scene playing out in the film,” the mind behind Sprinter told BUZZ.

Saulter said that while Sprinter is Akeem Sharp’s coming-of-age story, many Jamaicans should appreciate some of the struggles the teen is faced with throughout the movie.

Sprinter is really the story of a boy trying to run back to his mother – thinking if he can only run fast enough, maybe he can bring his family back together,” he remarked.

“That’s the larger, driving motivation but [Sprinter] is also about a young boy going from a nobody to the next Usain Bolt, the next big thing,” Saulter added.

“I really wanted to tell a story that had a realistic kind of feeling, as in, ‘What are we as people feeling?’, ‘What’s on the periphery of our lives?’,” he said.

“I wanted to show that we can make global stories about us”

-Storm Saulter, speaking with BUZZ

“For me, I wanted to show that we can make global stories about us, that can be made in this space and that can be made about people who are from here or living through their experiences either here or elsewhere,” Saulter added.

Saulter is on a mission to create universal stories wrapped in the complex social and cultural dynamics of the Caribbean. Sprinter marks Storm Saulter’s second major silver screen effort since the critically acclaimed Better Mus’ Come.

Sprinter is executively produced by Hollywood superstars Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith – with the film being shot, excluding international scenes, on location in Jamaica.

Watch the first installment of BUZZ‘s two-part interview with Storm Saulter below:

BUZZhive, We want to hear from you! Did you enjoy Sprinter? Tell us some of your favourite scenes in the comments section.