In the hopes of making a cinematic debut in Hollywood, Jerome Dolbert took the risk of leaving his successful career in television in France to come to the Golden State to make films and produce plays.
When Dolbert began his theater project, Year of the Diamond, he knew he would face a series of challenges getting his colleagues involved and also the production process wouldn’t be so simple. The factors primarily being that the play isn’t your traditional one.
The production consists of seven plays and numerous actors with a 12 part dance sequence illustrating the lives of some of history’s most significant men and woman. Each show will include musical dance and video interpretations that coincide with the stage dialogue.
Dolbert will audition actors and dancers for Year of the Diamond, Dec, 26 from 12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. at the Compton Library, 240 W. Compton Blvd. in Compton, with registration beginning at noon. Although casting is still pending, Dolbert hopes to present his production in April 2014 with a yet to be determined theater.
“We’re still working on getting a theater, but a lot of the work is already done with our team of people behind the scenes,” said Dolbert.
The production and storylines are still to be finished but Dolbert says the stories will pertain to figures such as Mary, mother of Jesus Christ, Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks and others.
Dolbert aims to use local talent from Compton and surrounding communities to encourage the creativity of the performers in the area. “We want to provide inner city youths with an alternative to gangs through the performing arts,” Dolbert says.
Born and raised in Paris, France, Dolbert began making his own 8mm films at the age of 10. After earning his Master’s degree at EDC Business School in Paris he attended Cours Florent in Paris to study directing and acting.
“I knew I needed to learn business if I was going to make a career out of producing and directing,” added Dolbert.
With 15 years of experience in the entertainment industry, his enthusiasm quickly landed him at TF1, one of the largest European private TV channels, with its 26 cable channels and an average market share of 28 percent of all viewers. Over the course of 11 years, Dolbert worked as a director and producer of several television projects as well as other business projects in Turkey to set up TV programs based on the TF1 model.
Dolbert’s work has been recognized by the top studios such as TF1 Group, M6 Group (Canal Plus) and also by many production companies. Throughout his career he found many rewarding experiences and success in numerous projects, but felt the need to follow his passion with filmmaking and writing. He inevitably realized that following this career choice would mean moving to Hollywood.
Shorty after his arrival to California, Dolbert joined the UCLA film directing program, which he completed in two years where he produced, wrote and directed the short film The Others, which won the Award of Merit at the Los Angeles Cinema Festival of Hollywood this past October.
Aside from producing his theatrical debut, Dolbert is currently working on his documentary The Prison Industry in the U.S. −2014, which provides a thorough look into the work life of federal inmates where they manufacture high-tech components for military weapons for the government earning 23 cents per hour.
Dolbert has opted to produce and direct a feature film based in Louisiana next year with details for the project still pending. “I love to work and I love to be around very creative and imaginative people…This is what Hollywood is all about.”
Don’t forget to see Year of the Diamond when its released next year, and also don’t miss Dolbert’s documentary, which will make for an eye-opening experience.