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NIA

After the death of her Grandmother, a young Black woman embarks on a journey of self-discovery and forgiveness, to find something she never had, her mother.

Writer and Director: Chantelle Ampomah Aboraah

Producer: Martina Russo

EP: Sheila Nortley

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BBC funded Short Film

After the death of her Grandmother, a young Black woman embarks on a journey of self-discovery and forgiveness, to find something she never had, her mother.

When Nia’s Grandmother suddenly passes away, Nia is plagued by conflicting thoughts surrounding her identity and ideas that she doesn’t truly know who she is, but that she no longer belongs in her hometown. Nia’s mother (of mixed descent) left Nia with her Grandmother when she was a child. Ever since then, Nia’s Grandmother had been raising her in a white countryside town. Now that her Grandmother is dead, Nia can’t help but feel alone in the world, and thoughts of her mother, and what could become of their relationship if rekindled reside in her mind. At her Grandmother’s wake, Nia is stunned when a stranger, paying their respects, leaves an old photograph of her mother and Grandmother pinned on a posterboard. It is this photograph that changes everything, when Nia is able to piece together clues within the photograph that could lead Nia to her mother. With nothing now holding her back, Nia decides to flee her hometown in hope of reuniting with her mother.

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Cast and Crew

Nia: Priscilla Fagbemi

Director of Photography: Jasper Enujuba

Editor: Robin Whalley

Composer: Athena Varosio

Line Producer: Ajuan Isaac-George

Costume Designer: Roslyne McQuillan

Production Designer: Angelica Sacrepaye

Production Manager: Darta Vijgrieze

1st AD: Laura Roe

Script Supervisor: Joseph Willis

3rd AD: Noemí Rodríguez

Hair & Make-up Designer: Cleo Young

Make-up Assistant: Viviane Bartlett

Assistant Set Decorator : Maria Marsh

Costume Assistant: Olive Clark

Costume Assistant: Alisa Tsyplakova

Production Assistant: Veronika Slowinska

Train Location Manager: Adrian Booth

Runner: Cassie Smyth

Colour Grader: Matthias Stoopman

Sound Designers: Liam Sharpe / Joseph Russell

1st AC: Falco Caldeira

2nd AC: Samuel Burton-Harris

Gaffer: Breandan McBennett

Spark: Misha Omelchuk

Sound Recordist: Reuben Vick

Van Driver: Barry Lack

Still Photographer: Eugenio Falcioni

Graphic Designer: Marco Minzoni / Alessandro Laganà

DIT: Jonathan Tan

Stills From the Film

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Director's Statement

"NIA is inspired by a true story, a story very close to my heart. The narrative is based on my Black British niece, whose mother (mixed race) left and moved to the US when she was 4 years old. My mother (white british) has been her legal guardian, and has raised her since her mother left.

 

I started writing this film because I wanted to voice the complexities/contradictions of being Black and growing up in a white environment, but also the profound connection we share as a human race with our identity. In my niece’s experience, I began to notice her suffering with the same challenges and internal conflicts regarding appearance, identity, and her Blackness, that I found myself facing – as a mixed race woman, who was also raised in the same white countryside town. There is an endless battle that takes place of confusion, surrounding self-acceptance, accompanied with plaguing feelings that you do not belong.

NIA is an important story as it portrays an under-represented voice of a young Black woman, called Nia. The aim is to capture the internal struggle, Nia, – and so many other Black Brits face regarding identity, in a way that felt authentic and humanising."

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Themes

self-discovery family  identity    

belonging 

forgiveness

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Do you want to watch NIA?

Soon on BBC iPlayer

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