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Franco-Senegalese director makes it to Cannes with her debut film

Franco-Senegalese director Ramata-Toulaye Sy at the Cannes film festival, May 19th 2023   -  
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Franco-Senegalese director Ramata-Toulaye Sy has made it to Cannes with her first feature length film.

She wrote the script for "Banel et Adama" back in 2014 when she was a student at the film school Fémis and only filmed it years later in a rural village in northern Senegal.

Although she was born, raised and studied in France, Sy said she felt the need to make her first film in Senegal. 

And she also choose to shoot entirely in the Pulaar language with non-professional actors who had been selected locally.

In the film Banel and Edama are very much in love.

They have never left their village in the north of Senegal, but their passion is in conflict with the age-old traditions of their community.

The balance is upset when Adama refuses to accept his responsibilities as a future chief, which causes upset in the village council.

Fiery and rebellious Banel wishes to live her life and enjoy her passionate relationship with Adama. So she stands up to her mother-in-law and confides in her that she doesn't want to be a mother.

"The destiny of a young woman is to give male offspring to her husband," Adama's mother-in-law tells her.

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