Berlinale

Kalo Pothi (The Black Hen)

Synopsis
In the remote Nepalese village during the Maoist Civil war, Prakash and Kiran, two 12-year-old boys are best friends, despite belonging to different casts. The simple ownership of a hen means a world to them: by selling the eggs they can make money and fulfill their childish dreams. But their society is constrained by poverty and caste divides. The sister of the poor one, Prakash, secretly joins the Maoist party, while the groom of Kiran’s sister gets arrested and killed by the Maoists. Trying to get the hen at any price Prakash and Kiran have to face the harsh reality of the world surrounding them.

Director’s Note
I was born in a remote village in Northern Nepal. I grew up to the smell of alpine trees, the sight of fresh, lush meadows, and the touch of cold Himalayan breeze. With the beauty of my surroundings existed a darker aspect of my childhood and of the communities living in that part of the world. Shackled by poverty, illiteracy and taboos, we lived in a society that is deeply split by caste and class divides. So, it wasn't easy having to accept the fact that I wasn't allowed to play with my best friend only because he belonged to a lower caste. This film is shot in my home village Mugu. I want to bring the audience's attention to a region so beautiful yet wrought with unimaginable hardships. The two young protagonists, as well as most other roles are nonprofessional actors selected from the local community.


World Premiere
Venice International Film Festival 2015, Semana de la crítica

Key festivals and awards
Fedeora Award, Venice International Film Festival 2015
Singapore International Film Festival 2015
Asia Pacific Screen Award 2015
Toronto International Film Festival 2015

Nepal 2015
Director: Min Bahadur Bham
Producer: Mila Production (Nepal), Shooney Films (Nepal), Tandem Production (Germany)
German WCF partner: Tandem Production
World sales: Mila Poductions (Nepal)

Funded in the WCF jury meeting in July 2014
Funding amount: 50,000 euros.