Mo Abudu’s EbonyLife TV is making a film about The fate of Afro Germans under Nazis. Before the Nazi party gained power and their propaganda spread to all of Germany, the German state was fairly progressive and was very tolerant especially racially. As Hitler took power in 1934, a new ‘order’ was established and mixed race children living in the Rhineland were tracked down by the Gestapo and sterilised on “secret order.” Some were later the subject of medical experiments, while others vanished.
American born Historian Eve Rosenhaft is a Professor of German Historical Studies, at the University of Liverpool and she wrote an article titled What happened to black Germans under the Nazis? on academic/journalistic website The Conversation. Her research has sparked new conversations on the commemoration of the Holocaust as well as how other races were treated.
It was this research that Mo Abudu read that prompted her to commission scriptwriter Nicole Brown to further investigate while developing the plot for a potential film. EbonyLife TV intends to tell their stories through a film called “Ava and Duante.” The film is set in an undisclosed location in Europe and will focus on the plight of Afro Germans who suffered persecution under Hitler.
It is the studio’s first foray into the international film market and a dramatic change in subject matter for Nollywood, which is famous for producing movies that focus on light-hearted story lines.
“When I read about it I just thought we need to put this to screen,” says Mrs. Abudu. “There are many children in that era born of African and German parentage and I felt what happened to those people. Their stories are totally untold.” “I don’t see this as a Nollywood film at all,” she continued. “I believe this is a film that has global appeal.”
EbonyLife is drawing up a casting list to begin filming later this year.
‘Ava and Duante’ is scheduled for theater release fall 2018.
Oluwatosin Adeshokan is a freelance journalist and writer reporting stories about West Africa. He was previously the Culture Editor for YNaija. He tweets at @TheOluwatosin