Since 2007 it has become known that Albinos in Tanzania, Congo and Kenya have become a commodity – human targets of a lucrative and sinister trade.
Witch doctors offer thousands of dollars for albino body parts which are believed to bring good fortune, prosperity and the ability to cure any illness. As a result, Tanzanian albinos, including children, have been murdered by gangs of men who hack off arms, legs or genitals. Some will pay from $500 to $5000 for an albino limb while the average annual income in Tanzania is $442. There is a saying in East Africa, “Albinos don’t die, they just disappear”. Seventy-three such documented killings have occurred in the past two years as well as hundreds of unreported attacks since 2007.
WHITE SHADOW is the story of Alias, a young albino boy on the run. After witnessing his father’s murder, his mother sends him away to find refuge in the city. He’s brought to the care of his uncle, Kosmos, a truck driver struggling with a few small businesses. In the city, Alias is a quick learner, selling sunglasses, DVDs and mobile phones. He is fond of his uncle’s daughter, Antoinette, although his uncle disapproves. Gradually the city becomes no different than the bush and wherever Alias travels the same rules of survival apply.
Noaz Deshe is a Berlin and Los Angeles-based artist/filmmaker.
He composed the soundtrack for Iranian director Babak Jalali’s debut feature film “Frontier Blues”.
His graphic novel “In Case We Never Meet Again” is awaiting publication. WHITE SHADOW is his feature film debut.
CAST & CREW
117′, color, HD, 1.85:1
a Asmara Films, Shadoworks and Mocajo Film production
in co-production with Chromosom Filmproduktion, French Exit, Phantasma Films, Real2Reel
Directed by: Noaz Deshe
Written by: Noaz Deshe, James Masson
Directors of Photography: Armin Dierolf, Noaz Deshe
Editors: Noaz Deshe, Xavier Box, Robin HIll, Nico Leunen
Production Design: Smith Kimaro, Deepesh Shapriya
Costumes: Sandra Leutert, Caren Miesenberger
Line producers: Vanessa Ciszewski, Francesca Zanza
Associate Producers: Matteo Ceccarini, Eva Riccobono, Luigi De Vecchi, Depart Foundation, Andreas Hommelsheim
Executive Producers: Ryan Gosling, Stefano Gallini-Durante
Co-producers: Alexander Wadouh, Matthias Luthardt, Babak Jalali
Produced by: Ginevra Elkann, Noaz Deshe, Francesco Melzi d’Eril
With: Hamisi Bazili, James Gayo, Glory Mbayuwayu, Salum Abdallah, James P. Salala, Tito Ntanga, Riziki Ally, John S. Mwakipunda
World premiere: 70th Venice International Film Festival, 28th Film Critics Week. Lion of the Future, Luigi De Laurentis Award