Toland Samba is an acclaimed African Producer/Director, lived in South Africa for many years where he studied, and worked as a fashion model, casting coordinator, French freelance voice-over artist and translator for Born Free Media (Broadcast HIV Africa) a program on HIV AIDS awareness for youth which was broadcast in most francophone countries in Africa drawing from his linguistic skills, ever since his passion for film took its course.
He then moved to New York to study film at the New York Film Academy, Where He directed/produced “Jocelyn the Muralist” which won an award at Hollywood International Documentary Film Festival, and won his second award at Docs Without Borders.
Prior to pursuing his Film career in the US, He completed a Diploma in photography at The Photography Institute.
London Prestige Interview with Producer Toland Samba
London Prestige: Tell us a little about yourself, growing up and your passions.
Toland Samba: I am Toland Samba I graduated from New York Film Academy. Currently I am based and working in New York City as a film producer/director. Growing up my passion was to be in front of the Camera (on TV) which happened as well in the past.
London Prestige: Did you have any specific influences growing up that lead you towards the film industry?
Toland Samba: I had that seed in me growing up, while attending a business Studies at Cape Peninsula University of Technology in South Africa, I was scouted to pursue a modeling/media career. Ever since my passion for film really took its course.
London Prestige: What are you currently working on?
Toland Samba: I am currently working on a feature film which is currently available on Amazon titled (THY FATHER’S CHAIR).
London Prestige: What were your main responsibilities on this film?
Toland Samba: Gearing up to its theatrical release. I overviewed the outreach campaign and social media campaign for NYC and LA. I coordinated and attracted other venues in the US that wanted to screen the film, finally I helped managed and coordinate agreements with 3rd parties for ancillary distribution of the film.
London Prestige: Can you tell us about your experience in working with the director?
Toland Samba: Initially I was not sure what to expect but it did not take long for us to get comfortable in our respective roles and drill down on what needed to be achieved despite the challenges that comes with an independent feature with limited resources which kept me on my toes also delayed our initial release date. I was fortunate to have a talented duo of directors (Antonio Tibalti and Alex Lora) and they were fun to work with on this production.
London Prestige: What was the most important thing for this movie to achieve from a narrative and character standpoint?
Toland Samba: Generally plot structure simply determines the sequence of events that lead the hero towards its objective. The most important thing for this movie to achieve was to be able to craft it in the way to interest the audience members by rising tension, conflict, and engaging audience on an emotional and intellectual level, motivating viewers to want to know what happen next “of course driven by the character wants and needs to improve his living condition”.
London Prestige: What other films have you produced?
Toland Samba: I have produced quite a number of films such as: Invisible Worm, Parivara (winner of Best Short Documentary), Godka Cirka, and many more can be found on my IMDB page.
London Prestige: What makes a film interesting for you? What are three qualities that you look for in a movie?
Toland Samba: In my opinion it’s the story line, something that engages the audience on all levels. The three qualities are: writing, acting and directing.
London Prestige: What project helped you launch your career?
Toland Samba: I would say my final at New York Film Academy.
London Prestige: Do you have any upcoming projects that you’re super excited about?
Toland Samba: I am currently working on a Feature in development titled (We are Leaving Things) I am submitting this project to various non-profit organizations and grants such as Tribeca Film Institute, IFP, FILM Independent. Find co-producing partner with China and Mexico. Help and participate in the raising of production funds for this upcoming production (Produced by No Permits Productions).
London Prestige: What advice would you give to someone who is aspiring to enter the film industry, especially as a producer?
Toland Samba: Find yourself a story you really want to tell, don’t be afraid of rejection. Somewhere the right people are waiting for you, you just have to find them.
London Prestige: Can you discuss any future projects or direction you are taking in regard to film making?
Toland Samba: I will be producing 3 other projects, the first one is from March 2019 titled “The Oldest Man Alive” (Feature length fiction film) it’s an international co-production between Italy, Romania and the US.