John Boyega Joins Forces With Converse To Inspire The Next Generation Of Black British Filmmakers

Converse and silver-screen star John Boyega have linked up for the Create Next Film Project—a new initiative that aims to nurture a new wave of rising Black...


Image via Converse


Converse and silver-screen star John Boyega have linked up for the Create Next Film Project, a new initiative which aims to nurture the talents of rising Black filmmakers in the UK. 

The latest instalment of Converse’s All-Star Program will see the Peckham-born actor coordinate a community-focused programme of mentorship, commissions and funding that aims to create new opportunities for young Black British creatives. The central focus here is to spotlight talent whilst highlighting issues of representation within the film industry.

“It was a conversation that happened prior to the pandemic,” Boyega tells Complex about his work with Converse. “I had been going from school to school within boroughs basically making the kids more aware of different job positions that are available in entertainment. You don’t just have to be in front of the screen, and you don’t have to ignore every other job role in the industry.” 

He added: “What I found as I was doing these school tours was that the kids didn’t even know about the other job roles. So it started to make me think about how I could bring my career, my connections, my influence and collaborate with a company that has funds and the passion to bring an opportunity for some filmmakers and young, budding, talented individuals.”

The Create Next Film Project will see Boyega work with five aspiring London filmmakers: Ade Femzo, Kaylen Francis, Kemi Anna Adeeko, Lorraine Khamali and Ibrahim Muhammad. Each filmmaker will receive funding to create a five-minute short film and be supported by Boyega and a team of creatives from across the Converse network—including Mathieu Ajan (Bounce Cinema) and Shannie Mears (The Elephant Room)—within the tight-knit mentorship programme.

Across the next six months, each filmmaker will be given guidance at key moments on their creative journeys, including the initial brief, a mid-point creative check-in, and at the crucial final edit. “This project isn’t only about five filmmakers,” Boyega adds. “It’s really about every aspiring Black filmmaker in London and beyond. We’re going to document the process so the community can grow alongside the All-Stars in this program—learn what they’re learning, seeing what they’re seeing.

“Converse has a campaign to ‘Create Next’, and I really feel that’s what we’re going to achieve with this initiative. I know how it goes with big corporations trying to relate to youth but Converse had a plan—they came with a vision and a clear goal, which was the answer I was looking for after doing the school tour. I wish I had it growing up so I’m glad we’re able to present this now.” 

We caught up with the five filmmakers taking part in Converse’s Create Next Film Project to learn more about their involvement in the scheme, what it’s been like working with John Boyega, and the ultimate vision for their work.


Kaylen Francis


Ibrahim Muhammad


Lorraine Khamali


Ade Femzo


Kemi Anna


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