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ALICIA K HARRIS

Filmmaker & Director

Alicia K. Harris is an award-winning filmmaker from Scarborough, ON. Her latest short film PICK won multiple awards, most notably Best Live Action Short at the 2020 Canadian Screen Awards, and is currently playing on CBC Gem. Collectively, her films have been broadcast nationally on CBC, TVO, Bell Fibe TV, and at numerous festivals, including Vancouver International Film Festival and Atlantic Film Festival. Alicia is an alumna of The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television’s directing program, sponsored by Netflix. Alicia’s work is dedicated to sharing the unique stories of Black women and girls, and showcasing the light and joy in Black people.

Meet with the Trailblazer

Motivation

My desire to see myself and other Black people represented with care, love and authenticity. I have always loved telling stories and my need to express myself creatively has always fueled my work.

Work

My work has spanned genres and mediums at this stage, but the theme that connects all my work is deep feelings. All of my characters are either deeply passionate, spirited, or expressing something deeply vulnerable. Most of my work is about Black people, and Black women, and in those works I am trying to make other Black people feel seen, while also educating or building empathy towards our experiences, for non-Black viewers.

Success

I don’t believe in “luck,” but divine planning and manifestation. When I have found the right collaborators, supporters, funding, advice, or ideas, sometimes it's because I was really striving and looking, and other times it just “came to me.” But I believe that was all because I was calling it in.

Impact

My mom has believed in me. Whatever I ended up doing, I know she would have supported me. She made many sacrifices so I could be where I am today. I wouldn’t have had the space or comfort to dream and achieve if not for her.

Collaboration

It all started with film school, then film festivals, then film communities. Over the years, as my work has become known and I’ve seen the work of others, I’ve been blessed to find many like minded people, who are also passionate about making space for marginalized creators and stories.

Challenges

There have been many times where I question my place in the film industry, and I still do. But once I realized that “making it” had less to do with where I ended up and what I achieved, and more to do with enjoying where I was every day, I realized it was impossible to not “make it.”

Believe in yourself, the importance of your voice and your story.

Simply, finishing my 2019 film PICK (a very personal and emotionally taxing project). Having the support from producers Rebeca Ortiz and Venessa Harris to make it to the end, after years. Having it resonate with people all over the world was the cherry on top.

Experience

Advice

Believe in yourself, the importance of your voice and your story. Don’t tie your success up into one festival, award, grant, meet and greet, etc - however you are meant to make it to the next stage, and whoever you are meant to meet that will you get there... it will happen when it's right!

What you want, you are. You always were.
-alicia k harris
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ALICIA K HARRIS

REELWORLD'S

2021 TRAILBLAZER
RECIPIENT

Filmmaker & Director

2021 VISIONARY AWARD

2021 AWARD OF EXCELLENCE