In this episode of Directing Magic; Tchaiko Omawale , writer and director of her debut feature film SOLACE, joins Marquette. They discuss Tchaiko’s 15-year filmmaking journey of making this personal film about overcoming eating disorders and self-harm, how to gain actors’ trust as a first time director, and what it was like to work with veteran actors Lynn Whitfield and Glynn Turman.
Tchaiko grew up in seven countries while her father worked for UNICEF. She graduated from Columbia University then interned for Spike Lee and Mira Nair. While assisting directors George C. Wolfe and Tom Vaughan, she directed several short form projects. Tchaiko was awarded the Gaea Sea Change Residency for artists working for social change. Her feature film Solace is currently in postproduction. It was a Semi-Finalist for Sundance Writers Lab 2012; a recipient of the Panavision New Filmmakers Program 2015; In 2016 the project participated in Tribeca All Access, the IFP Narrative Lab, the Creative Visions Creative Activist Program and Big Vision Empty Wallet diversity program. In 2017 it was a Women In Film grantee and a Film Independent Efilm/Company 3 grant winner. Tchaiko was a 2017 School of Making Thinking Resident fellow where she created the VR film Shapeshifters making its festival run in 2018. In between her independent projects she produces and directs commercials and branded content.