Locarno First Look Winner ‘Semret’ World Premieres at Locarno
“Semret” stars British newcomer Lula Mebrahtu (alongside Tedros Teclebrhan and Hermela Tekleab), whose understated physicality in the role of Semret expertly belies the violence of the character’s trauma as Semret moves through scenes with a palpable past.
SEMRET : ‘LOCARNO’ REVIEW – A NUANCED AND COMPASSIONATE LOOK AT THE IMMIGRATION EXPERIENCE (by Arun Kumar)
'British Eritrean actor, poet, songwriter, and presenter Lula Mebrahtu gives a brilliant understated performance in the titular role. Lula has hosted music festivals and a series of BBC documentaries. I first came to know about her through a powerful live performance and speech in a TEDx event. Titled, ‘The Journey of a Digital Migrant’, Lula uses technology, music and songs to inventively chronicle the painful journey of migration. So first of all it’s fascinating to see such an inspiring and vivacious personality, gracefully slipping into the character of Semret Dawit.'
This ‘zoom animation’ is inspired by the testimonies of 4 Eritrean refugees who fled their homes to make the dangerous journey across Ethiopia, Sudan and Libya to Europe. Illustrated by Karrie Fransman. Sound and voiceover written and recorded by Lula Mebrahtu. North Star Fading made the final shortlist for an ‘Inspiration Award’ at the 2019 Research in Film Awards.
The documentary, filmed with the BBC was longlisted for an Amnestsy International award.