We’d normally expect a visit from Skepta to Shutdown the city with his high-octan performances. But the grime superstar will be in Bristol for a more relaxed reason this weekend (February 3). While he has a new album Knife and Fork (his first in five years) on the way, he’ll be promoting his new film, Tribal Mark.
Tribal Mark follows “the poignant journey of Young Mark, who immigrates from Nigeria to London. Trauma becomes the crucible of his motivation as Mark navigates life in the UK trying to fit in, where his trials and tribulations birth a lethal hitman. This coming-of-age story unravels the complex interplay between suffering and ambition.”
This – his directorial debut – features a 90% minority ethnic cast and production team and aims to tackle racism and oppression both on and off camera. Young Mark is played by rising star Jude Carmichael, who was discovered through open castings, as the character eventually evolves into the titular Tribal Mark – played by Skepta himself.
Tribal Mark opens with the disclaimer: “This is not a Skepta biopic, this is a fictional story…” So it’s important to note that, although taking inspiration from his life, this is an entirely new character. The 24-minute film is the first glimpse of the wider Tribal Mark universe, first conceptualised by Skepta and co-director Dwight Okechukwu in 2021.
Influences range from the Brazilian crime film City of God to Andy Warhol’s Eating A Hamburger and James Bond. Skepta also jumped on a new song, ‘Jangrova’, with Idris Elba and Nigerian artist Odumodublvck for the soundtrack. Tribal Mark will be screened at Everyman on Saturday, February 3 at 6pm, followed by a Q&A with Skepta himself. To get tickets head here.