This week on Basic Black, local creatives of color discuss representation in the film industry, from independent projects to big-screen hits like Wakanda Forever, which includes scenes shot in Cambridge.

The Secret Society of Black Creatives, a group for Black content creators in New England, is holding its annual Konnect Konference from April 12 - 14. A key benefit for attendees will be envisioning a spot for themselves in the industry.

“The ‘see them, be them’ mentality is so important,” said Gregory Warfield Jr., the co-founder of Sweeter The Juice Films. He said that he didn’t see many people who looked like him when he entered the film industry six years ago. “[The conference is] three days, you’re seeing people working all different crew positions, writers, directors, cast members that have really done this at the highest level. It just really makes me hopeful, and I think it’s really empowering to the next generation of filmmakers,” he said.

Nerissa Williams Scott, CEO of That Child Got Talent Entertainment and the treasurer for the Secret Society of Black Creatives, said that the group has helped Black creatives get a seat at the table. “I feel like the state was not aware of our presence, but now, because of the Secret Society, we’re trudging forward and we’re setting an example of what can and should be done to represent us in this community,” said Scott.

Thato Mwosa, assistant professor of screenwriting at Emerson College and an independent writer and filmmaker, encourages her students to tell their stories, despite any obstacles. “Being a Black creative, being a Black filmmaker, comes with many challenges,” she said. “Our stories need to be told… we have the talent, we have the voice, we want that representation, but when we’re not given the resources, when we’re not given the funding, it’s challenging,” she said.

Chris Hope is the founder and executive director of The Loop Lab, a nonprofit media education organization. His students are high schoolers and young adults. “They’re learning so much more than just how to work Adobe Premiere suite and editing… they’re really gaining holistic transferable skills,” he said. “If they decide not to continue in the media, they’ll know how to do project management, they’ll know how to be more self-effective in administrative work,” he said.

Watch the full show to hear the rest of the conversation.