T&T episodes of Love & Hip Hop Atlanta to air from next Monday
Karlie Redd with costumed girls from Lost Tribe’s Talent Bank
Social media was abuzz a few months ago when the cast of Love and Hop Hip Atlanta descended on Trinidad and Tobago just ahead of Carnival.
On Monday night, the viewing audience of the popular VH1 reality television series will see Trinidad and Tobago on display as the backdrop to show.
In February, the cast and crew travelled to Trinidad and Tobago to shoot episodes for the show’s eighth season.
This was confirmed in a press conference hosted by Imagine Media and attended by representatives from the Love & Hip Hop cast and executive crew, FilmTT and Tourism Trinidad Ltd on February 26.
In last week’s episode, the tenth episode of this season, dancehall artiste Spice, who is a cast member on the show, announced that she was invited to perform at Machel Monday, and that Trinidad and Tobago’s Ministry of Tourism had extended an invitation to other cast members to visit the country.
The preview for next Monday’s episode shows cast members Yung Joc, Lil Scrappy and Kirk Frost walking through the Bamboo Cathedral in Macqueripe and the entire cast dining at a location resembling Crew’s Inn in Chaguaramas.
And while it wasn’t in the preview for next week’s episode, viewers can also expect to see the crew turning up at JAM Nation and Machel Monday at some point.
Creative TT confirmed that T&T will serve as the backdrop to the show for three episodes, starting this Monday.
According to a release from Creative TT, VIACOM/VH1 invested 100 percent of the filming and production budget into the country.
The Ministry of Tourism and Trinidad Tourism Limited facilitated tours by local tour operators to various eco-tourism destinations and supported this with additional security protocols handled by local security teams, due to the large cast and crew of over 100 persons.
“It’s is always great to see Trinidad and Tobago featured as a tourist destination in the Caribbean. I believe that our culture and activities inclusive of the carnival season attract millennials from around the world whom within recent years have shown spending power and variety of influence in their travel interest. Spanning from adventurous travel to cultural and leisure opportunities Trinidad and Tobago is now positioned itself amongst the most talked about countries of interest to see because of popular tv shows like Love and Hip Hop which audience span the globe. Productions like these also continues to stimulate the economy and spur growth within the film and television production industry. Opening doors of opportunities for advertisers, reality shows, documentaries, television and digital series to see the variety of locations available in Trinidad and Tobago.” Sherrese Moise, Supervising Producer, Love and Hip Hop.
Creative TT said “This project contributed to the building of the economy in the form of temporary employment and country and local brand exposure. 22 local crew, members were hired to assist in this production inclusive of production assistants, gaffers, location coordinators, production coordinators. The production also facilitated the transfer of skills and learning. Some of the local featured stakeholders included Xceptional Xperience and Star Rentals.”
Ashaki Scott, Managing Director of Xceptional Xperience, the company that coordinated aspects of the visit for the cast and crew, says the experience was invaluable from a knowledge-sharing standpoint.
“It was an opportunity for the transfer of knowledge to take place. They came with their entire production crew of over 35 who were very much experienced internationally. Of course, our local production team learned a lot about production, especially reality production – reality productions are totally different from scripted production because anything could happen!”
Lisa Wickham, President & CEO, Imagine Media, echoed similar sentiments, saying, "Imagine Media continues to work with international productions and local stakeholders with the aim of creating viable opportunities for local crews and service providers. Many of these opportunities take years to unfold, however, the exponential growth in content creation for legacy and new media over the past 10 years means that the wheels of industry are beginning to turn faster in the creative sector here in T&T. This only augurs well for our practitioners."
“We are excited for the opportunities to build and grow T&T as the ideal filming location. FilmTT will continue to facilitate and stimulate these types of collaborations to maximise the economic and creative potential of Trinidad and Tobago’s screen industries for the benefit of the country and its people.” Nneka Luke, General Manager, FilmTT.