African-German Filmmakers Hope to Open Up ‘New Perspectives’
By David Gordon Smith in Berlin
A teenage girl finds her life turned upside down when her father, who she has never met, turns up. After some initial distrust, she begins to develop an affection for him. Even though she still blames him for abandoning her mother, she begins to understand that life is about making difficult choices — until she finds out her father has established a new one with another woman.
The plot of the short film “Cherish” is one which many people could relate to. Winta Yohannes, the film’s 32-year-old German director, wanted just that. “It’s a universal story which very many Germans can identify with,” she says.
But the film is more than just that. Yohannes, who was born in Eritrea and moved to Germany at the age of three, is showing her film at this year’s Berlin International Film Festival (Berlinale) as part of the series “New Perspectives.” Her film is informed by her experiences growing up in Germany — a country where the black minority is next to invisible.
That’s something the organizers, the association Black Artists in German Film (SFD), is trying to change. “We want to make people aware of the fact that black filmmakers are making films which avoid the old clichés and represent black life as we see it,” says SFD’s Philippa Ebéné. READ MORE!