In 1997, Abbas Kiarostami received the Fellini award from the United Nations for his humane films. At the invitation of the IFAD (International Fund for Agricultural Development, part of the United Nations) Kiarostami travelled in 2000 to Kampala in Uganda with one of his staff to research a possible documentary about the 1.6 million orphans in the country. They filmed there with two DV cameras, that were intended to provide background material, like notes, for the film. But when Kiarostami saw the first footage, he decided that the material was basically already a documentary in itself. In this way Kiarostami more or less coincidentally made his first DV film.We follow the journey of the Iranian filmmakers from the very first fax from the IFAD that rolls out of the fax machine to the last shot from a plane taking off. Kiarostami filmed the faces of thousands of children and interviewed countless women whose husbands died of AIDS. The spontaneous style of filming - and the spontaneity of those filmed makes the dualistic reality of Africa extra clear: the children's ability to adapt and survive, their optimism and hope, despite the pain of years of civil war and the destructive effect of AIDS.

Filmmaker
Abbas Kiarostami
Premiere
-
Country
Iran, France
Year
2001
Medium
35mm
Length
84’
Language
English, Farsi
Producer
A. Kiarostami Production, MK2 Productions
Sales
MK2
Editor
Abbas Kiarostami