Karatara – ‘Place of Deep Shadows’

Cannes Docs

Karatara – ‘Place of Deep Shadows’

Original title: Karatara – ‘Place of Deep Shadows’

Directed by: Teboho Edkins

Produced by: Carine Chichkowsky (Survivance, France), Jia Zhao (Muyi Films, Netherlands), Don Edkins (Day Zero Films, South Africa)

Country of production: South Africa

Runtime: 80'

Expected release: May, 2025

Production stage: Late Development

Budget: €300 000 (33% in place)

1st feature: No

Looking for: Festivals, Sales Agents, Distributors, Gap Financing


Karatara – ‘Place of Deep Shadows’, is a film about ghosts, in which the ghosts, both real and imagined, haunt the lives of a mixed-race community in a small town in post-apartheid South Africa. It is a film about memory, land and identity, an encounter with a South African society where the violence of the past shades and literally haunts the present. By searching for ghosts, and portraying the people haunted by them I understand what is happening in Karatara as the slow, inevitable process of decolonization up close.




Director’s profile:

Teboho Edkins (*1980 in Tennessee, USA) grew up in Southern Africa and lives and works in Cape Town and Berlin. He studied at the Michaelis School of Fine Art, (South Africa) and at Le Fresnoy Studio National des Arts Contemporains (France) followed by a degree in directing at the Deutsche Film und Fernseh-akademie in Berlin. Teboho Edkins’s films have shown at many festivals, group and solo exhibitions, including at the Centre Pompidou, Paris; Tate Modern, London. Some of the over 500 film festivals his films have screened at include the Berlinale (Panorama); the IFFRotterdam; New Directors, New Films in NYC. Notable prizes include the Inter. Jury Prize of the Oberhausen FF, the Golden Tanit at the JCC in Tunis, the El Guna Golden Star, Egypt. Several festivals have screened a curated selection of his work, most recently a retrospective at the International Short FF, Oberhausen in 2023.

Producer’s profile:

Carine Chichkowsky founded Survivance with Guillaum Morel in 2010. The two were bound by a common desire for «another» cinema, one that does not respond in an overwhelming way to what the market would like to sell to us, but that speaks to those who wish to see it. Survivance produces, distributes and publishes art house films of all genres. We have produced over 20 films, which have been screened at the Berlinale, Locarno, Toronto, Rotterdam, and key documentary festivals and coproduced by HBO Europe, Arte, Al Jazeera and France televisions. Through its various distribution activities, Survivance showcases great names & young talents of documentary and fiction cinema, releasing films by Apitchatpong Weerasethakul, Tsai Ming-Liang, Pedro Costa, Koji Fukada, Kleber Mendoça Filho, Mila Turajlić, Leonardo di Costanzo and Lea Glob.

Jia Zhao is a Chinese-Dutch film producer based in Amsterdam. In 2012, she founded MUYI FILM and co-founded “Silk Road Film Salon” with Aboozar Amini. In 2021, “A Marble Travelogue” was selected for IDFA Frontlight and “I’m So Sorry” for the Cannes film festival. From 2015 to 2019 her works have been shortlisted for the IDFA Competition section in a row, with “Kabul, City in the Wind” being the opening film for the IDFA 2018 and awarded Jury Award for First Appearance Competition. Since 2022 Jia is also the artistic director of Cinemasia film festival in Amsterdam.