Director: Eloïse Barbieri, Producer: Eloïse Barbieri, Production/Copyright: Eloïse Barbieri, Italy, 4K, 14×26′-35′, 2019, Rights: World except Italian speaking territories
A compelling intimate travel documentary series in 4K featured in the popular RAI program Geo, filmed in different parts of the world seen through the eyes of Eloïse Barbieri who narrates the series. Each episode comes with M&E and separate voiceover soundtrack, great for localisation to adapt to any market. Eloise has been given access to places where not many Western journalists have been before.
In the episode Ani, the nuns of Yaqen gar (co-produced with SD Cinematografica) she becomes the first Western journalist to stay with the women in the remote Eastern Tibetan Yaqen gar, an immense Buddhist settlement threatened by removal by the Chinese government.
In A world apart Eloise goes to East Ethiopia. Harar is a world apart, not like any other African city, the fourth holy city of Islam. Here she meets two young women, Touffà a teacher and Farya a nurse, who are both fighting to improve conditions for girls and women in Ethiopia.
In The manna that changed everything (La manna che ha travolto tutto) we are in Tibet, meeting the locals of a small Himalayan village who are foraging a fungus at an altitude of about 4500 m, seen as an elixir of long life, used in Chinese medicine, a trade that is worth billions of Euros. The valuable fungus is locally known as Yarsakunbu. Seduced by this opportunity of earning money, they have abandoned their traditional livelihood like yak farming and this is putting their whole community at risk, as due to climate change and overexploitation, the fungi are now near extinction.
We get to visit different areas of the Italian Alps in the Gran Paradiso National Park we meet the artist Barbara a painter, she has chosen to live up here since the ’80s in an old house completely cut off in the winter months. In Pino’s world we go to Aosta Valley in the village of Perloz one of the least populated of this region. Here among the chestnut groves, there are many old hamlets, many abandoned.
These woods and their tranquillity have seduced Angelo Bettoni, a wood craftsman and above all an artist who has created an open-air museum. In The shepherd’s winter Varaita Valley seeing how the locals live their lives keeping.
Eloïse travels to Greenland where the landscape is dominated by the white and the blue. The monotony interrupted only by rare villages, where the houses are cheerful multicoloured brushstrokes. Oqaatsut is a village where the traditional way of life may soon come to an end as it relies heavily on government funding. It consists of colourful houses situated on the west coast, where the school is also the church. In Oqaatsut there are 25 inhabitants and 70 sledge dogs, Asta is the teacher of the only class that has 4 students. Emilia is the oldest student, in June she will have her confirmation, a great event that everyone in the village is carefully preparing for. Inauva, his 9-year-old brother, learns the hard life of these villages based on hunting and fishing. Every afternoon he trains to conduct sledge dogs. Maria, their 5-year-old sister, is the youngest in the school and in the village. In Oqaatsut there is also a store that sells a bit of everything, prices are high, but they are the same throughout Greenland thanks to the government who subsidize the costs of transport. Asta, the teacher, comes from the nearby town of Ilulissat which has 4,000 inhabitants. She likes the life in Oqaatsut even if sometimes, during the arctic night that seems to never end, she misses her hometown where she returns by boat every weekend. The fisherman Nukat accompanies her, together they sail among some of the largest and most spectacular icebergs on the planet. Life in the small towns of Greenland always flows the same, but things may drastically change in the near future. Perhaps in a few years, the government will no longer finance the transport of goods and will close all the small schools, villages like Oqaatsut might, therefore, be uninhabited.