FROM HER home in New York City, Selena Blake keeps up to date with events in her native Jamaica. She is aware of the music scene and perennial crime, but chose to focus on an embattled minority for Taboo … Gay and Lesbian Yardies: The Voices of Those Who Dare to Speak, her second documentary.
Blake, 45, said she decided to take on the sensitive subject of Jamaican aggression toward gays last year. At a fund-raising event in New York City for Taboo last week, she said patrons were concerned that violence against homosexuals was still rampant in Jamaica.
“I was speaking to someone who told me that Elton John has completely boycotted Jamaica because of this, and it’s not just him. Several prominent folks have decided not to do stuff in Jamaica,” Blake told The Gleaner.
Blake plans to gather an eclectic ‘cast’ for Taboo which she says will cost US$250,000 to produce. She is planning to interview persons from ‘across the board’ in Miami, Canada, England and Jamaica.
To date, Blake has spoken to members of the Caribbean gay community in New York City including Jamaican activist Staceyann Chin and Christine Quinn, the openly gay speaker of the New York City Council.
Taboo follows on the heels of Queensbridge: The Other Side, Blake’s revealing documentary about the Long Island housing project, which got strong reviews from noted publications like the New York Times. She went public with Taboo at a time when Jamaican indifference to gays is once again on the radar. documentary.