Saturday, December 24, 2011

New film: Philippe Niang's "Toussaint L'Ouverture"


Via Shadow and Act
The long overdue film of Haitian revolutionary Toussaint L'Ouverture, directed by Philippe Niang, is produced and will be aired on the network France 2 in February or March 2012.

Jimmy Jean-Louis stars as the title character in what will be a 2-part TV-movie, and he's joined by French actresses Aïssa Maïga (Paris, Je T'Aime, Bamako) as Toussaint's wife, Suzanne, and Sonia Rolland (Moloch Tropical, Midnight In Paris) as Marie-Eugénie Sonthonax, wife of abolitionist L.F. Sonthonax



Kreylicious (the hub for young, upwardly mobile Haitian-Americans) interviewed Haitian born star Jimmy Jean-Louis about the film. Some snippets of the interview.

How did you get involved?
The producers contacted me. You have to understand they have tried to make this movie for the past 20 years. And Danny Glover tried to make this movie for the past 15 years. And many other names have tried to make it. It was a long overdue movie. I was called by the producers to play the role, because they felt I fit the character. I had to do a lot of exercises. I had to learn how to ride a horse. I took lessons for a couple of months. [I had to learn how to] do sword-fighting. I took lessons in California and France.

Why was the movie filmed in Martinique and not in Haiti? A lot of people feel it would have brought a lot of publicity to Haiti, and it only seemed natural that it should be filmed in Haiti and not another island.
Haiti falls short on some requirements. I think the production tried, but it’s difficult to get insurance to insure a place like Haiti right now. From what I’ve been told, that’s one of the reasons why we couldn’t go there and shoot. The structure in Haiti is not the best either. Electricity. The roads are still pretty bad. As a Haitian, I would love to have shot it there.

Check out the full interview at http://kreyolicious.com

The film is produced by the Martinique based production company Eloa Prod

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