FOR the last two years, Fernando Edwards has experienced challenges most independent film-makers face, especially early in their careers. On March 25, that toil bears fruit in Rooted Betrayal, a 30-minute drama.
Edwards, who is from Portmore in St Catherine, wears several hats for the film which will be released on Amazon Prime Video and Tubi. He is lead actor, director, executive director and producer.
Amazon Prime Video is an American subscription video on-demand over-the-top streaming and rental service of Amazon offered as a standalone service or as part of Amazon's Prime subscription. Tubi is also an American over-the-top content platform and ad-supported streaming service, but owned by Fox Corporation.
Rooted Betrayal is Edwards' biggest project since moving to Los Angeles 10 years ago and getting involved in the film industry. He has appeared in the HBO drama Ballers, and played Shooter in She Ball, the 2020 comedy starring Nick Cannon, Cedric The Entertainer, and Chris Brown.
"Rooted Betrayal is 30-minute psychological thriller regarding a love that turned sour and one man's struggle to survive the aftermath. It takes two years from creating to writing, putting together the team and production from script to screen," Edwards disclosed. "Post-production, I will say add an extra six months, but it never stops."
There are two main characters (Edwards plays Andre while Suely Ramos is Stacy) in Rooted Betrayal, as well as "day players and background" which are industry requirements. Edwards did not disclose its budget but said he covered the cost as executive producer.
A graduate of Bridgeport High School, Edwards earned a scholarship to Missouri Baptist University where he graduated with a degree in business management. But there was a different type of commerce on his mind when he headed to Los Angeles.
"Film-making has always been a vision of mine. Now is it an easy industry to break in? Being a working actor is infinitely more difficult, and being a successful working actor is harder than that," he explained.
Edwards already has plans for a follow-up to Rooted Betrayal â€” a six-episode spin-off series that he has identified funding for. He also hopes to direct and produce a musical in Jamaica with a local cast and production team.