The feature documentary Elevate, featured at the Heartland Film Fest in Indianapolis this month (Oct 13-22), was profiled on our site back in June; when we annouced its screening at the Los Angeles Film Festival.
Elevate, directed by Anne Buford and produced by Buford, Chiemi Karasawa, Mark Becker, and Victoria Yoffie, chronicles the lives of four Senegalese teenagers that head off to the U.S. to pursue their NBA dreams, and in their journey struggle with alienation and culture clashes.
Full synopsis after the jump:
Filmed over four years, from the dilapidated cement courts of Senegal to upscale American prep schools, Elevate documents the extraordinary personal journeys of four particularly tall West African Muslim teenagers. Recruited for both their physical and academic skills, Assane, Dethie, Byago and Aziz accept basketball scholarships to schools in the United States–and face the daunting challenges of alienation, a foreign language, American-style basketball and an unfamiliar American culture rife with African stereotypes. But with courage, humor, and remarkable resilience, they relentlessly pursue their dreams–to obtain an education and a shot at the NBA.
Variance Films has acquired the film for a theater release in New York on Oct 21st at the AMC Empire 25 in Times Square, Nov 4th in Los Angeles at Laemmle’s Sunset 5 and nationwide soon after.
I look forward to this. I’ve always been intrigued about the experiences of Africans in America, especially when it comes to interactions with African Americans.
Take a look at the trailer.