New movie to combat child sacrifice
- Written by Andrew Kaggwa
It is not common for a professional filmmaker to come to Africa to do an advocacy movie.
Yet former Australian journalist and documentary director, Jo Wolfram Schefcik did it. When he first visited Uganda about seven years back, Jo was dedicated to learning about Ugandans’ livelihood and culture. Armed with his camera, he set out and did documentaries about night dancers and other practices. While residing in Ntinda, Zainab Nassansa, a shopkeeper who was aware of his job, approached him with an idea.
“She wanted me to make a real movie and already had the story outlined,” Jo says.
Since the problem of child sacrifice was rampart at the time, Nassansa’s story was skewed to the topic. With the help of a friend Maribel Resty, Jo turned Nassansa’s story into a full-length movie script. Lucky for them, they learnt of a story of a woman whose family had sacrificed her son.
That’s when It’s All About Money was born –a movie bringing to life the scourge that child sacrifice is in Uganda. For the actors, the project was more of a social responsibility, thus, they did it for free. According to Jo, making the film was not meant to pass judgment but to remind the public that something needs to be done.
“Anything that brings change needs to be discussed,” Jo says.
The film story idea rotates around a child that was coincidentally kidnapped. The parents’ search is not successful at first. Unfolding events in the movie end up at a witch-doctor´s place where the child is a victim and it is with shock when we realize that events leading to the child´s murder had all been due to advice the child´s father gives to his brother in-law. Unfortunately, the child cannot be saved because the rescue comes too late.
The movie tries to challenge those involved in the practice that just the way you may enjoy killing other people’s children, assume it was your relatives or your own being sacrificed elsewhere. The movie premiered in Uganda at the Nile Diaspora International Film Festival and is already listed to screen at other world festivals.
“We basically premiered in Kampala because they are the people the message is intended for,” Jo says.
However, even when the film is achieving such mileage, it wasn’t easy for the crew; they had to rally for support from the ministries in charge and all this was in vain. At one point, Jo was told that when a child is sacrificed, it has nothing to do with the ministry but the police.
But with the movie done, Jo and his Ugandan friends and co-stars in the epic, hope to start a movement that will combat child sacrifice, follow up on cases where it’s involved and also petition the government to introduce a day where they celebrate the lives of all children that have been victims of the act.