Gilbert Mirambeau Jr.
screenwriter to watch
Gilbert Mirambeau Jr. is a writer and producer known for Kafou (2017) and Kidnapping Inc. (2018). Born in Port-au-Prince, Gilbert is based in Haiti and Montreal. For three years, he was the head writer and a produce for Muska Production, a leading audiovisual production company. After co-founding Muska Films in 2016, Gilbert focuses on writing and producing heartfelt films.
How did you break in?
Breaking into writing was slightly unusual! Ever since I was a child, I always loved reading. This led me to writing poems and short stories in my early teens, and later on to two unpublished plays. Then, I became literally addicted to theatre and films which inspired to the world of screenwriting: I had to convert my play into a short film. Since then, I started writing shorts. In 2012, I was approached to write a pilot for a sitcom. In 2013, I joined Bruno Mourral and Jean Samuel André on the Kidnapping Inc. project and we never stopped!
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learned?
Perfection does not exist! I learned this the hard way where sometimes you must let go of a characters, scenes, or even a whole act. The character drives the story, not the writer.
What has been your hardest scene to write?
Even though Kafou was tough and ongoing, Kidnapping Inc. is the hardest project. We’ve been working on it since 2013 and 5 years later, we’re still stripping it down to its best version. As a writer, it’s always hard to go back to the story structure and dialogues, make changes without getting lost and stay focus. We worked with a script doctor who helped us remain objective and on track. Today, we are satisfied with the final version of Kidnapping Inc. which transcends the action comedy we are looking for with an underlying profound and conscious message.
What do you feel was your turning point?
In 2013, I was writing and producing commercials and Tv series for Muska Production. Since we knew we needed follow our dream, we took it to the next level where my partners and I founded Muska Films. This led me to write and produce Kafou, which is a major turning point in my career.
What are you working on right now?
We’re working on Kidnapping Inc. and waiting for some funding from the CNC (National Center of Cinematography and the Moving Image) to start the production in fall. I’m also working on a musical documentary series on the Haitian Music Industry.
What are your favorite movies?
Since there are so many, here’s a list of my top 20 films:
Life is Beautiful, The Reader, Good Will Hunting, Finding Neverland, Monsieur Lazhar, The Green Mile, Intouchables, Incendies, The Professional, The Departed, Million dollar Baby, The Chorus, Pan’s Labyrinth, Poliss, Memento, The Dark Knight, V for Vendetta, Ratatouille, The Life of the Others, Cinema Paradiso
Who are your favorite screenwriters?
Joel Cohen, Paul Haggis, Christopher Nolan, Quentin Tarantino, Woody Allen, Alfonso Cuaron
What is your most Memorable AFF Moment?
I had the privilege to attend Austin Film Festival in 2017 and share a rare moment with so many talented and visionary minds. It was incredibly humbling to walk among artistic giants who shared their knowledge and craft so freely and generously while dealing with the hardships of making films… I was simply blown away on how cool the festival was, especially on how the staff is passionate. Austin Film Festival was a great chapter in the story of my life.