About this project
Blanco follows the story of three albino children who have a lot more in common than simply meets the eye. In the outskirts of a small mountain town called Constanza in the Dominican Republic, albinos are commonly referred as “blondies” or “Americans.” These kids face the daily challenges of sun-burns and susceptibility to blindness, but most challenging of all is coming-of-age in a culture that struggles to understand them and their condition. Our goal is to portray their hardships under a poetic light while documenting the social constraints that surround them.
Blanco is an observational documentary about the daily lives of two families with albino children. We aim to bring to light the realities they live in, amidst their internal struggles and their strenuous livelihoods. Both families live off subsistence farming and possess few resources to cope with their childrens' condition. The story will weave through mountain ranges, fog, rivers and country roads; despite whatever hardships our protagonist’s endure they will always be surrounded by inescapable natural beauty.
(Left to Right: Yeni, Yanibel, Joba, and Cakito)
The Victoriano family (featured above) have three children, eight-month-old Yanibel being the youngest. The family often doesn’t have enough to meet their basic needs or an adequate standard of living. Yanibel’s parents are marginalized by a classist society which reduces them to nomads. Their daughter’s albinism has created a sensation amidst the town folks, sparking gossip that the child is stolen or that the mother was unfaithful to her husband. These rumors have further alienated them from their neighbors. Yanibel has an innocent almost angelic aura that makes her seem unaffected by the hardships that surround her, and in her blue eyes there is wisdom beyond her young age. The uniqueness of the child has made her a symbol of hope for the family as they struggle to take care of basic daily needs.
(Left to Right: David Yoel, Bella Niris, Anaíris, and Ana Belkis)
The Diaz-Lara family are hard workers with big goals. As opposed to the Victoriano family, the Diaz-Lara’s are integrated into the Constanza life.The parents are educated and all of their children attend school. That withstanding, there is a lot of internal conflict brought about by their childrens' albinism. The oldest daughter Ana Belkis, is entering puberty and having difficulty accepting why she looks different than almost everyone around her. Her younger brother, David Joel, is a restless youth, he is fun, outgoing, and likes to take charge of household affairs. Unfortunately, both are beginning to show some symptoms of loss of eyesight; something their parents do not want to accept.
Characters and Locations
WHAT WILL THE FUNDS BE USED FOR?
- Production: The crew will need to be fed and lodged in the town of Constanza. The rental of video and audio equipment for 3 weeks.
- Transportation: Most of the locations are only accessible by 4x4, motorcycle, or horseback, which makes it a daily logistical challenge.
- Hospital visits will play an important role of the narrative. These visits will help the parents understand their childrens' needs and provide a new level of self-understanding to the children themselves.
- Post-production: Because of the observative nature of this documentary the editing and sound design will be a massive undertaking that will take up a third of the budget.
Any amount of support will appreciated, thanks for reading and please share.
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