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We Hear All About the Hustle Collective’s Brand New Film Group, Hustle Cinematic

20 May 22 interview: George White
photos: Lu's Art Factory

We chat to the Hustle Collective’s Christine Katerere about their new film movement Hustle Cinematic, and how they’re hoping to encourage societal change through the immersive, boundary-smashing world of cinema…

What will Hustle Cinematic bring to Nottingham's Screen scene?
Hustle Cinematic is a screening and visual arts platform, incorporating multiple artforms to celebrate culture and community. Future programming will be driven by what the community tells us it needs. We want to showcase and have our audiences partake in narratives that help put us in each other’s shoes.

You've mentioned that you see film as a potential vehicle for social change. How do you plan on using cinema in this way, and what sort of change are you hoping to achieve?  
We believe in the transformative nature of film, of how offering insight into different perspectives can help shed divisive values. What we would like is to start conversations. Only through acknowledging situations and having dialogue can we come to collectively seek solutions that can better our community and honour our shared values. The arts are integral to this. It’s how we connect and grow.

Why did you feel that now was the right time to launch this project? 
After a very challenging couple of years living under the spectre of the pandemic, in which we were all forced to be more insular and fearful, it felt more important than ever to bring people together to celebrate our similarities rather than our differences. 

Our inaugural event, Black Speculative, took place last month and was about celebrating geekiness, otherness, possibilities and futurity. It featured an afro-futuristic themed screening of Afro Samurai, introduced by animator Jessica Ashman and including immersive visuals by artist Kim Thompson, as well as live music from DJs Where It’s Warm and NikNak. We aimed to create an inclusive space where the audience was encouraged to dress up as anything they wanted, or just be themselves. We said, "Come as you are or come as others. We welcome you."

One inspiration for Hustle Cinematic was the late, great Sophia Ramcharan and her Fade II Black Film and Music Lounge. We hope to create events as meaningful as this

We did this in collaboration with The Screen at Nottingham Contemporary and with the help of Film Hub Midlands, Funimation and Arts Council England, and it was inspired in part by the Contemporary’s Our Silver City 2094 exhibition, which ran from November 2021 until April 2022. This also influenced the timing of the event as thematically we wanted to be as close to this wonderful exhibition of possibility as we could, showing what a cohesive Nottingham might look like.

Have you taken any inspiration from any other local film groups or collectives, and can we expect any collaborations with these groups any time soon?
One inspiration for Hustle Cinematic was the late, great Sophia Ramcharan and her Fade II Black Film and Music Lounge. We hope to create events as meaningful as this - bringing audiences together to share time and care about each other, about the community, through this wonderful medium. At present we hope to work with everyone from the wider Hustle Collective, SheAfriq Collective, Mimm, Nottingham C.A.N, Broadway Cinema - but we are very much open to collaborating with anyone that can help us bring people together through the arts.

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