Finally the Sandgrains trailer is finished!
In 4 years of production we have gone through many versions, every time updating it with the latest.
Now we finally got to the final version, edited with material from the final cut of the film.
You can watch it in the 7 different languages the documentary will be released in.
A huge thanks to Jordie who edited it, Filippo who graded it, Mirco for the amazing audio and tracks and last but not least all the supporters who made the film possible.
Finally the Sandgrains trailer is finished!
Today in Italy in the Saturday supplement of Repubblica you can find the photo-essay from Cape Verde.
Photos by Francesca Tosarelli and article by Alessia Gallione.
The work has been created in coproduction with the Sandgrains documentary and the article explores the conjunctions of sand gathering and the construction industry.
On the 19th of May we got our first publication on the Guardian Weekend Magazine!
Hannah Booth wrote a column to go with a photo of Francesca's Sandgrains gallery in the Big Picture section.
Here below is the tearsheet of the double spread page, and if you want to see the online version visit this link.
This is what Shark Diver writes about Sandgrains:
'We tend to admire and promote those who take the craft of documentary work with all the seriousness it deserves and Sandgrains is one of those well crafted works that deserves a first, second, and third look."
if you want to check it out visit this link
Gabriel's guest blog on the Greenpeace site!
As this is our last production update from Cape Verde and West Africa, we would like to share a discovery with you which we made during our stay in Mindelo, on the island of Sao Vicente. We decided to not go public with our progress because we needed to investigate something that has been proved to be a legal mess allowing unregulated and destructive fishing practices.
The European Union has an agreement with Cape Verde to fish highly migratory species, namely tuna. But Spanish and Portuguese vessels actually target sharks because of the high value of their fins on the Asian markets. This is done at the fringes of what is legal but it's having dramatic consequences on the local population. It is not illegal because the agreements are unclear and can be interpreted in various ways. But what we know for sure is that this practice goes against the foundation of the agreement, where it is stated that European fishing vessels should work sustainably and not have an impact on resources targeted by locals.
Sharks are top predators and removing them has effects on the entire food chain in the area. Smaller fish that would prefer to be in the open ocean stay close to shore to find refuge from the sharks. Those smaller species that have disappeared mysteriously are what locals have caught for centuries. The pressure created by sharks is now so weak that fish which used to shelter by shore now freely roam the open ocean. Local fishermen can't reach their target species unless they go far out with their little boats (which can have lethal consequences) and shoals are now in reach of international vessels, which can vacuum them up without having to take the risk of fishing them illegally within the 12 mile exclusion zone.
In 2009 the port of Mindelo saw 1400 tons of shark and shark fins. In the following year transshipment of shark products had more than doubled to 3200 tons, and by 2011 this reached 12.000 tons. These numbers are an indication of how worrying the whole situation is but don't represent the entire scale because much fishing remains unreported.
Here you can see the photo gallery for a glimpse of what we filmed during that week of investigation.
Our underwater operator Drew came to visit us on production and we had quite a few problems at customs with his equipment. But after a week of panic and haggling we finally managed to start working on our underwater scenes. Visit this link to see some photos of the week.
With special thanks to the photographer Andrew Sutton who took the under water pictures.
Full copyright © Andrew Sutton
Mindelo is a quaint touristic city, with colonial architecture and beautiful beaches by the promenade. To be honest we had hoped to spend a few days there relaxing by the sea, but in the end the stories we found were so intense, and what we discovered about foreign fishing in Cape Verde was so stunning that we barely managed to stop, although we did manage to get a little rest at the end.
The 4 Sundays ahead of carnival see a celebration with the exhibition of a group, like the one of the Mandingas, and the city becomes alive with the rhythm of samba. An explosion of energy featuring man in black, the whole gay community and abundance of grog which gives a yellow tint to the eyes.
In Mindelo we also met Kiso, our Cape Verdian supporter and flight controller. He has been extremely welcoming and joined us for an unforgettable dive into the Cape Verdean culture at the Esplanada Hollanda, a bar where Cesaria Évora used to perform before she became famous, in exchange for a couple of glasses of grog.
After a long sleepless night at the airport, spent working with the wonderful free wifi there, we arrived at Mindelo on the island of Sao Vicente, part of the northern Barlavento archipelago.
We rented a flat (bartered to a great price by Francesca from our landlord Artur), and spent another intense 10 days there.
Mindelo is a strategic point for international fisheries: thanks to geological formations the port is the biggest and most active in all of CapeVerde.
We made several interviews with fisheries engineers, marine biologists and the CEO of the port's node for international and national fisheries. José ended his stay with us in Cape Verde and left for Gothenburg in Sweden. We spent only three weeks with him and it felt like three months!
We left Ribeira da Barca on the island of Santiago, together with José for the second chapter of production: Mindelo, on the island of Sao Vicente. While traveling we made a stop in the capital Praia, where another part of production has been filmed. We met with the Cape Verdean Coast Guard, and had a very informative interview with the geologist Sonia Silva at the University, about the geological and environmental effects of sand gathering and the destruction of Cape Verde's beaches.
Another problem caused by sand gathering is the salination of fresh water deposits. Salt water from the ocean seeps into the ground, destroying plantations near the coast and ruining wells. The sand functioned as a filter, and now without this buffer the farmers are experiencing a significant drop in crop productivity.
José brought us to Ribeira das Prata, a beach half an hour north of Ribeira da Barca. Volcanic black sand still
covers a long, wide shoreline here, and it is startlingly beautiful.
The former beaches of Ribeira da Barca and Charco, where José used to play football many years ago, covered an even wider expanse than this one.
The points of view of Ribeira da Barca's fishermen are essential for understanding what is happening in the Cape Verdean waters. We followed a usual work day of fishing with some of the the most experienced fishermen in the village. The catch was disappointing as it often is, with just 6 fish caught. Ze Antonio and Nelson gave us a long and very interesting interview aboard their little boat.
Ze and the crew go to Charco with cousin Ja, where people are gathering sand by the shore. There is none left above water so they must dig it up from the sea bed.
At the end Mirco has a quiet moment recording the sound of crashing surf.
Just outside our window, Jordie and Gabriel return from filming at sea. Fishermen launch their wooden boats just next to our house, which is filled with nets and fishing gear.
We showed a video of Ze playing football for a Swedish team in a bar by the square, and Mirco realized his dream of fresh lobster dinner, provided by Ze's nephew.
Jordie makes grog cocktails during a blackout, and Ze's brother Yuku scrubs with a fish net. The quiet pace of village life continues undisturbed by our presence.
Sunday, Ze' and his friends went for a walk towards the grog making farmers, but they were not there, so we just enjoyed the walk. Along the way we met Ja, the woman in the trailer collecting sand on the beach of Charco and set up a day of shooting with her.
We made a deal with a lady that agreed to cook for us so that we can concentrate on production and in the evening also sorted out internet connection which will make our communication with everyone following our story much easier!
Ze's nephew and friends came to pick us up in Praia and drve us to Ribeira Da Barca, our main location. Along the way we took the first shots of the country and of Ze' returning home.
We settled into an abandoned house in front of the sea, broken windows but a wonderful view!
And in the evening we had our first local produced grog at the bar.
6 January 2012, after three years of pre-production and hard work the Sandgrains team finally leaves for production in Cape Verde. Ze' and Gabriel left from Gothenburg, Sweden and joined Francesca and Jordie in London.
At the Lisbon stop-over we got together with Mirco who was travelling from Italy. We landed in Praia at 1 o'clock at night, exhausted by the long journey and the stressful days before departure.
The Leading Cape Verdean Diaspora News Site just published an article on Sandgrains by Richard Webb.
The sita has ½ million visitors and 1 million pages read monthly.
Follow this link to read the entire article.
The full story of Sandgrains, written by director Gabriel Manrique and published by Kids Talk Radio in the USA.
Here the link to the full article.
Thanks so much for the pubblication!
Items 1 to 20 of 21 total