Tanna

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Australia | 2015 | 99 minutes | Martin Butler, Bentley Dean

In this lush, visually breathtaking film, the first shot entirely on the island nation of Vanuatu, rebellious Wawa must choose between loyalty to her clan and her own heart when she is betrothed to a man from another tribe.

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On the lush tropical island of Tanna, the conviction of two star-crossed lovers will change their tribe's culture forever. This visually breathtaking film is the first to be shot entirely on the island nation of Vanuatu, and features nonprofessional actors whose performances bring vibrancy to a story based on real events. Mischievous youngster Selin is encouraged to be more like her older sister, Wawa, who is being readied to undertake the ceremony that will recognize her as a grown woman of the Yakel tribe. But Wawa is rebellious in her own way: She and Dain, the handsome grandson of the tribal chief, are in love. When, as part of an effort to resolve island hostilities, Wawa is betrothed to a man from another tribe, she must choose between loyalty to her clan and her own heart. In preparation for their first narrative feature film, experienced documentary directors Bentley Dean and Martin Butler lived with the Yakel for months to learn their culture, develop the film's story, and find their cast among natives who had never seen a movie or a camera before.

Director Biography
Bentley Dean and Martin Butler are award-winning documentary directors/producers whose first narrative feature is Tanna. Their doc First Footprints (2013) explores Australia's 50,000-year Aboriginal history.

Sponsored by FOOL Serious, Snoqualmie Indian Tribe

  • Director: Martin Butler, Bentley Dean
  • Principal Cast: Marie Wawa, Mungau Dain, Marceline Rofit, Chief Charlie Kahla
  • Country: Australia, Vanuatu
  • Year: 2015
  • Running Time: 99 minutes
  • Producer: Carolyn Johnson, Bentley Dean, Martin Butler
  • Screenplay: Bentley Dean, Martin Butler, John Collee
  • Cinematographers: Bentley Dean
  • Editors: Tania Michel Nehme
  • Music: Antony Partos
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Awards: Venice International Film Festival 2015 (International Critics’ Week Award, Fedeora Award for Best Cinematography)
  • Filmography: Contact (Doc, 2010)
  • Language: Nauvhal
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP
  • US Distributor: Lightyear Entertainment
  • International Sales: Visit Films