May 06, 2004 12:00am
African Art-film Aficionado Announces Adult Asperations
Source: Letters to the Editor
by: Jean-Luc Kienge
Pornography, the Passion of the Christ and Hollywood: What Do These Three Have in Common? Known in Africa as the black Tarantino, native African filmmaker Jean-Luc Kienge (a.k.a Mister Man) has turned his eyes to the porn industry. What would lead a man born and raised Catholic to do such thing? Pornography and sexual activity outside of marriage are sins condemned by the church. According to Mr. Man, his change of heart happened while watching the Passion of the Christ on April 6th, his 33rd birthday.
Inspired by the sacrifice of Christ, he decided to do something about the tragic situation of his birthland, Congo. With a half-finished documentary on the Congolese genocide on hold for financial funding, Mr. Man realized that worthy causes sometimes require desperate acts. He strongly believes that the documentary will be a tool for justice in the name of the 4 million brothers and sisters who were slaughtered over the course of the 4 years of Congo's war. And so his pornography plan was hatched. Here is his story.
Mister Man Had a Dream, No Money, a Movie Script and a Mogul's Ambition.
A Last Chance in Hollywood
What would you do if you lived for writing scripts and you were good at it, but your work had gone unnoticed because of bad luck or a lack of opportunity? If you had come from Africa armed with a vision of the Hollywood dream, a digital video camera and an unrelenting belief in your talent and your willingness to work hard?
If you were Mister Man, here's what you wouldn't do: give up. Instead, you would keep dreaming that one day, against all odds, you would catch a break and get noticed. You would rely on moxie instead of money, using homespun documentaries and short movies shot on video as an outlet for your passion and a vehicle for your dream. You would use any means possible to keep that dream alive; rather than face a life without hope.
In winter 2000, after spending 3years doing dead end jobs in Hollywood to raise money to make his movie Mister Man finally saved just enough to buy a digital camera and a ticket to Dublin to make his movie. While there he rewrote his script, found his lead actor, shot, directed and produced his alternative/ dogma movie "Conquistador" in only 7 days! In doing so, he joined the growing ranks of Alternative filmmakers who are flaunting the formulaic rules of the Hollywood movie industry. Instead of big budget effects and established celebrity personalities, the new breed of Dogma-style film concentrates on the art of story telling and turns the spotlight back to the vision of the filmmaker.
Lacking support from any Hollywood studios, the video was sold directly in Africa. From the sales, Mr. Man had enough money to start his documentary, Freedom for Africa. But as the work continued, the project required more money for completion, including funding to buy the rights to historical footage covering Congo's history prior to and during the war.
But when the filmmaker started making the rounds to traditional production houses, he found plenty of Hollywood promises that would melt like ice cream in the hot sun upon further questioning. The filmmaker's situation seemed hopeless. But as luck would have it, he came into contact with an anonymous private investors in Europe who offered to give him money to finish his dream project documentary in exchange for first working for the investor in an adult movie venture.
With his participation in this venture, Mister Man will produce over 100 adult movies in the first and second year, using the profits to finance the completion of the documentary, as well as establish a fund that will help struggling independent filmmakers to finish their projects without selling their souls. He also plans to open a foundation to further world awareness of the Congolese genocide, which took 4 million lives between 1997 and 2003.
Mister Man is committed to increasing the exposure of African artists and adding their unique voices to North American film. To learn more about Mister Man or to set up an interview or guest appearance, visit his website at CongoCinema.com There you can also find information about Congo Cinema's current projects and opportunities, and order his book From Africa to Hollywood or his first video release Conquistador.
Please contact Mister Man by email at CongoCinema.com.
Or telephone: 604-519-6760