Except for Cool Runnings and a few scenes from Blue Lagoon, Jamaica has never had much of a film scene. So when Shottas came out in 2002, it became a cult hit. The film, about two friends who grew up on the hard streets of Kingston and Miami, featured modern reggae stars Ky-mani Marley and Spragga Benz. It was kind of like Jamaica's Boyz N Da Hood.
Eleven years later, its director, Cess Silvera, who grew up partly in Fort Lauderdale, is working on another movie. (His 2008 comedy called G.E.D., filmed in Sistrunk, apparently never was released.) Overtown, described as a follow-up to Shottas, is currently being filmed in Miami's historic black neighborhood, starring former Miami Dolphin Chad "Ochocinco" Johnson, X-Men's Vinnie Jones, True Blood's Kelly Overton, and The Walking Dead's Lew Temple. "Latin soap star Khotan Fernandez and Jamaican music legend Mavado will also feature in the follow-up to Silvera's Jamaican gangster cult classic," a statement said.
Sea Also: -- Chad Ochocinco is Obsessed with Orcas
Silvera's team has started a Kickstarter page to expand his budget for the film. Donors can win a day on the set with Silvera that ends at a Miami Heat game or win a role in the film, among other prizes. With 28 days to go, it had raised $10,000 of its $200,000 goal.
"I want to bring attention to the violent, drug-ridden culture of poor neighborhoods but with more authenticity than big-budget Hollywood films," Silvera said. "Our movie will have more heart and soul, not to mention humor and street-life realism. Our movie is based on true events, just like Shottas was. Our movie will show Hollywood that we don't need millions of dollars to make movies that the streets love and cherish."
The movie is "a true story of three friends from vastly different backgrounds, tied together by their struggle to survive in the Miami ghetto. They decide to take matters into their own hands by infiltrating the oceanfront mansion of the local drug lord, but things don't go as planned, and Dusty (Johnson), Raul (Fernandez) and Tammy (Overton) are left with blood on their hands, drugs in their trunk, and the most dangerous people in Miami out to get them."
Keep New Times Broward-Palm Beach Free... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering South Florida with no paywalls.