Fall Grant 2013 - Production Stage
Current project status: COMPLETED
As ‘Lamb’ opens, nine-year-old Ephraïm (an affecting As ‘Lamb’ opens, nine-year-old Ephraïm (an affecting performance by Rediate Amare) is beset with a series of hardships. His mother has died as a result of the drought that has plagued his northern Ethiopian village; his father must go to Addis Ababa for work; and Ephraïm himself is packed off to stay with his great-aunt Emama and his stern and disapproving uncle Solomon, faraway in the south. The youngster’s lone comfort is his late mother’s golden-fleeced sheep Chuni. Inseparable from the docile animal, Ephraïm is distraught when Solomon announces that Chuni must be slaughtered in order to feed his dangerously malnourished young daughter. With that, the boy devises a plan to return to his village and save his friend.
Set against the magnificent mountains of southern Ethiopia, this first feature by Yared Zeleke is a finely tuned coming-of-age chronicle. Faced by the harshness of nature and the perennial tug-of-war between generations, Ephraïm wends his way along a sometimes rocky path between the comfort of the past and the uncertainty of the future. Inspired by the director’s own childhood, ‘Lamb’ is a clear-eyed look at a youth’s struggle to find his way in the world.
- Yared Zeleke
- Yared Zeleke, Géraldine Bajard
- Ama Ampadu, Laurent Lavolé
About the Director
Yared Zeleke holds an MFA in Writing and Directing from New York University. He worked for various NGOs in the USA, Ethiopia, Namibia and Norway before pursuing filmmaking. Zeleke has written, produced, directed and edited several short documentary and fiction films, among which are ‘Housewarming’ and 'Lottery Boy'. He worked for director Joshua Litle on his award-winning documentary ‘The Furious Force of Rhymes’. In Ethiopia, he edited documentaries for UNIDO.
Production Company Profile
Slum Kid Films is an Ethiopia-based film production company co-founded by Ama Ampadu. It aims to discover and nurture emerging talent in Africa, and in Ethiopia in particular, as well as to support the development of Ethiopian filmmaking. The company is currently preparing the first feature-length fiction film by Ethiopian writer-director Yared Zeleke. Entitled ‘Lamb’, the film is being produced along with Gloria Films Production (France) and Heimatfilm (Germany). Films Distribution is acting as international sales agent, and the film will be distributed in France by Haut et Court. Other projects in development are ‘Edna’ and ‘Ms Ethiopia’, while ‘Lottery Boy’, an experimental short by Yared Zeleke, is currently in post-production.
Awards and Festival History
Cannes Film Festival 2015, Un Certain Regard (WP)
Karlovy Vary International Film Festival 2015, Another View