CASTING MISSION STATEMENT
From Director Joseph Amenta
The casting of a film is always a crucial aspect of filmmaking, and with Tribe, it is the most essential. As an active member of the LGBTQ community in Toronto, and as a racialized person from an immigrant family, I understand the delicacy of those we wish to collaborate with. With a constant prioritization of respect, patience, and guardianship, discovering our cast for Tribe will be a process that my team and I vow to approach in an ethical manner. We are not interested in holding 'auditions' in a conventional way, instead, we wish to meet a diverse range of underrepresented lives in order to learn from them, build a relationship with them, and hopefully allow for their stories to be told on screen in an authentic and honest way through self-representation.
Far too often queer stories and trans lives are disconnected from the presentiment of our stories in cinema. This is something I will change. I wish to build a cast of adolescent boys of mixed racial origin, and a middle-aged trans woman of colour to ensure that their stories are being told with the input they require. I have worked with non-actors in the past numerous times, utilizing the immense pool of talent that is found in the LGBTQ community. I wish to nurture these voices to build a platform for their stories on-screen through the guided hand of a narrative feature film. I am interested in collaborating to build a story together, with the cast developing their character alongside my direction. The subject matter is sensitive, and I will take the time to approach these important social issues with care.
My past short works, Cherry Cola, Haus, and most recently Flood, all tell the stories of lives ignored. I aim to continue this method of storytelling to create sociopolitical change through visibility. These lives do matter. These lives are integral to the future of our society. These lives deserve a platform for their stories. Building collaboration with organizations that aim to protect and support these lives, I hope to work together to cast the film and authentically represent the obstacles and triumphs queer minorities face. I wish to show queer characters with agency and power even if their circumstances are sometimes dire. With your help, we can tell this story in the most authentic and respectful way possible. That has always been my goal, and will always be my mandate.
Joseph Amenta has produced, written, and directed numerous short films that have screened at festivals internationally. Joseph’s recent short, "Haus" 2018 was fully funded by Canada Council for the Arts, premiered at Vancouver International 2018 and was selected for Clermont-Ferrand International Competition 2019. Joseph was offered the TIFF Avrich Fund industry festival pass as one of 10 promising Canadian filmmakers in 2018. He has recently completed the Directors’ Lab residency at the Canadian Film Centre 2018. Joseph was the recipient of the Toronto Screenwriting Conference Breakthrough Artist Award in 2019 for the 1st draft of the "Tribe" script.