Viet Nam News
By Minh Thu
HÀ NỘI — Vietnamese engineers and technicians joined hands to change lives in a remote area of Africa.
The story inspired Discovery Channel filmmakers to make a documentary featuring the hard work of the Vietnamese team and showing the impact they had on local people.
The 24-minute film will air in December on Discovery Asia Pacific and Discovery Africa.
The film crew arrived in Việt Nam on Wednesday to shoot the film’s final scenes. They are scheduled to stay for one week.
Hà Thục Vân, director of the Red Bridge Company and the production director of the film’s shoot in Việt Nam, told Việt Nam News the title of the documentary: “Connecting Dreams.”
The film is about Vietnamese people bringing modern technologies to poor countries with the aim of improving the lives of local people.
The film shows the lives of the Maasai people in Kenya and the Nilotic ethnic group in northern Tanzania.
Their lives have changed thanks to the Military Industry and Telecoms Group Viettel, which overcame huge difficulties to bring advanced technologies to underdeveloped areas.
The documentary started filming in late 2017 and has finished shooting in Africa.
The film crew has visited Việt Nam multiple times already to film in Cà Mau and Hải Phòng. Now, they return for a shoot in Hà Nội that will end the documentary.
The seven-member crew includes the Vietnamese-American host of the documentary, Jordan Nguyen. Creative director Vikram Channa, producers Emile Guertin and Ira Tufile and other production staffers also made the trip.
Channa came to Việt Nam in 2009 and 2010 to produce a series of documentaries for Discovery including “Mr Long’s Traveling Cinema,” “Jam Buster,” “Digging up the Dead” and “Thousand-year-old City”.
The team will be joined by Vân and assistant producer Nguyễn Thị Thanh Hương.
“Channa’s four films tell four unique stories about Việt Nam’s culture and society in the context of integration and urbanisation,” Vân said.
“The story of Vietnamese technicians working in Africa moved us,” said Vân. “You can’t imagine the hard conditions and severe weather they suffered. They did extraordinary work. Audiences will see how technology changed the lives of locals.”
Vân said that the return of Discovery Channel indicates Việt Nam’s successful integration with the world. She said the documentary would introduce more than 600 million viewers to the strength and compassion of the Vietnamese people.
“It is an opportunity to popularise Việt Nam and its people without any cost.”
Vân praised the careful approach of Discover Channel’s filmmakers and content writers. “They want to feature ‘Connecting Dreams’ because they like the story and think it can inspire others.” — VNS