PNG Short Film – Sinabada

Veialu Aila-Unsworth

Papua New Guinea born New Zealander short-film writer and director, Veialu Aila-Unsworth, is currently working on her next project Sinabada. Set in the 1930s, the 10 minute short-film is an historical drama which puts a spotlight on the 1928 White Women’s Protection Ordinance which made it illegal for interracial relationships in PNG at that time.

(For those of you have read Moses Maladina’s novel Tabu, you may remember that the above legislation was mentioned more than once as a deterrence to Sitiveni’s relationship with Elizabeth).

The film was developed by New Zealand playwright, Albert Belz, and script consultant, Catherine Fitzgerald. In the film, a PNG boy discovers his older brother is having a forbidden love affair with a white woman but when he unwittingly exposes the affair to police, his worst nightmare comes true as his brother is hung by the neck and killed. Sinabada will be filmed in Alotau, PNG.

Veialu Aila-Unsworth is the writer, director, illustrator and producer of the internationally acclaimed unique animated short-film Blue Willow, which has been screened in over 26 film festivals in 11 countries including the prestigious Berlin International Film Festival, ranked alongside Cannes and Venice.

With a New Zealand mother and Papua New Guinean father, Aila-Unsworth’s first film Yu Belong Weh? explores the small PNG community in Wellington, asking nine members who left their families behind to migrate to NZ’s capital city about their experiences living abroad.


To read a great review of Aila-Unsworth’s Blue Willow, click here. To watch the trailer of Blue Willow, click here.

~ by Tavurvur on August 17, 2009.

3 Responses to “PNG Short Film – Sinabada”

  1. I just took a look at Blue Willow. WOW!!!!! It’s awesome to see PNGeans taking on the world in meaningful industries. Great job Veialu! Keep it up.

  2. Tavurvur,

    Thanks for posting this! I’ve been following your blog for a while now – fantastic site. Many thanks for the wonderful range and scope of articles.

    I stumbled across Blue Willow when I was traveling in Europe. Must say I was completely stunned when I found out the producer was PNGean!!


  3. Your report is very interesting indeed. I invite You to see a great collection of views of borders (riigipiirid) in my Italian-Estonian site
    Best wishes from Italy!

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