Shenseea, Konshens, Ding Dong, Chris Gayle, and Shaggy may soon be in a local movie. Along with the experienced Ky-Mani Marley, the five local celebrities are in talks with United States film director Joshua Coates for the production of the upcoming film So Enticing.
Adapted from Colin Don Rose's debut novel of the same name, Coates expects filming will begin in June, with a tentative wrap scheduled in August.
Thorsten Kaye of the Bold and the Beautiful, and Torrei Hart (ex-wife of Kevin Hart) have also been in talks to take on the film.
"I'm confident in what I'm doing and I wanna share that with Jamaica and I wanna do it right," he said, noting he wanted an accurate perception of Jamaica. "That's why we're sticking to real Jamaicans. We may mix it with some American actors, but the core of the film is Jamaican artistes."
Coates visited the island on vacation last year, and left with a lasting impression. He was introduced to Rose who gave him his book, which Coates said was a page-turner.
Originally published and released in 2015, So Enticing is a murder mystery set in the US in the early 1990s, told from the perspective of a young African-American woman named Peaches. For Coates' adaptation, the majority of the film will be set in Jamaica.
Coates said that when he came to Jamaica and people found out what he did, they showed him their stage plays, portfolios, and headshots.
"The people impressed me so much. With the combination of reading [Rose's] book, I thought 'this has to happen. It has to be shot here'," Coates explained.
Yesterday, Coates met with film commissioner Renee Robinson to apply for the relevant filming permits from JAMPRO, and to conduct preliminary talent scouting.
"My main objective is to not take from Jamaica, but to give back," he said. Though Coates' team has entered discussions with potential leads from local stars, there will be an opportunity for other players to enter the fray.
Next month, there will be a seven-day casting call for actors and recording artistes alike.
"The music is the heartbeat of the film. Jamaica itself is basically the star, and everybody else are co-stars. Everything is in talks, but we have real commitments with a lot of people," he said.
Coates has partnered with Sharon Burke of Solid Agency and entertainment bigwig Romeich to produce an exclusive soundtrack for the film.
A website for aspiring actors and artistes to upload their photos and schedule an audition will also be created soon.
"But you have to physically show up and it will be by appointments only," the director said about auditions.