“Atali'i O Le Crezent(Sons of the Crezent)”
With his neighbourhood under threat from gentrification, a young man recalls his youth, his roots and his upbringing through spoken word, memories and dance.
During an unexpected 1 and a half year stay in New Zealand amid the COVID-19 pandemic, I found myself creatively stagnant, the longest hiatus since I first picked up a camera. The separation from my work and community was challenging, and months passed without inspiration. However, witnessing Villa Junior Lemanu's mesmerizing dance play at the Pacific Island Dance Festival reignited my creative spark. Although vastly different from my previous work, his performance encapsulated everything I aspired for in my films—conveying a poignant narrative through humanity, colloquial humour, emotion, and wonder. I approached Villa about adapting his story into a short film, embracing a similar experimental structure. And amid severe COVID lockdowns, we somehow brought the project to life.