A Film is Born

Whilst visiting Marrakesh for a week to shoot a documentary on legendary interior designer Bill Willis for Sketch Films, I happened to meet Babou and Samba, who were selling trinkets in the Jemaa el Fna square. We shared dinner in a local back-street Senegalese cafe, and the story they told of their journey to Morocco was staggering on many levels. I restrained my initial excitement, and invited the two of them to be interviewed the following evening. The one hour interview we shot covered much ground, from the outline of their physical journey, to their motivations for leaving, the emotional challenges of the journey, and their retrospective view on the past two years.

Towards the end of the interview, Babou mentioned that his dream had always been “to be a writer or an actor”. He had assumed that his lack of further education would prevent him from ever achieving his dream. His aspiration, along with their obvious charisma, not to mention the hugely cinematic scope of their journey, was enough to motivate me to make a film telling their true story. The rest, as they say, will be history.

– Jason Brooks