Joelle, a hair stylist living in Toronto, has a challenging day when a mysterious visitor from her past arrives for a drop-in appointment.
Writer/director: Naledi Jackson
Producer: Priscilla Galvez
The Drop In explores notions of cultural identity and memory through the lens of genre.
The film was inspired by several factors, the majority of which are personal. I was raised in Zimbabwe, and half of my family is from South Africa (which borders Zimbabwe), so there is a part of me that feels deeply rooted in that region of Africa. That being said, I have chosen to live and work in North America for a number of reasons, even though I consider Zimbabwe to be home.
In The Drop In, I wanted to explore the sentiments of attachment to an idealized distant homeland, and the various complexities that come with that. Immigrants (and diaspora) often have to deal with a lot of inner conflict and frequently grapple with a sense of betrayal for having left their countries. I sought to express this through the action component of the film.
Another aspect of the immigrant experience that I wanted to explore was the concept of ‘code switching,’ and the necessity to override cultural programming in order to fit in. I wanted to explore this particular concept through science fiction, which I incorporated into the last act of the film.
The final inspiration for the project is the current conversation around ‘illegal’ human beings in the form of refugees and undocumented immigrants. What does one have to do to survive and thrive in a land that is essentially not your own? To be braided into a new society, yet not feel like you truly belong? These questions of allegiance and love of homeland, yet the desire for security, are at the heart of this film.
About Naledi Jackson
Naledi Jackson is a writer, director and producer based in Toronto and Los Angeles.
At present, she is a writer and co-producer on the Netflix/CBC drama Anne with an E (season 3). Other screenwriting credits include the Netflix original sci-fi series Another Life, CTV’s detective drama The Detail, CBC’s 21 Thunder and the Netflix horror anthology Slasher.
Naledi’s short film The Drop In premiered at Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) in 2017 and was part of TIFF’s Canada Top Ten Festival in 2018.
She is a recipient of grants and awards from BravoFACT, Toronto Arts Council, Harold Greenberg Fund and Toronto After Dark Film Festival. She is also a Writers Guild of Canada Screenwriting Awards nominee.