The story of a group of proud Jamaican freedom fighters, Akwantu: The Journey has arrived in time for Caribbean American Heritage Month.
The film tells the story of men that were considered the “Spartacus” of their time; except these enslaved Africans were victorious in their fight for freedom. Akwantu: the Journey documents the struggles for freedom of the Jamaican Maroons, rebel slaves of West African origin who defeated the mighty British army and formed independent communities in the rugged and remote regions of Jamaica in the early-mid 18th century. The descendants of these communities still maintain their proud heritage today. Yet so little is known about the Maroons whose very rich culture and heritage is threatened to now become a thing of the past.
This fact is not lost on Jamaican-born New Jersey-based filmmaker and stuntman Roy T. Anderson. After years of research and dozens of interviews that took him from remote regions of Jamaica’s Blue Mountains to the coastal environs of Ghana and its interior, then finally to the mysterious and isolated community of Accompong, St. Elizabeth, he has conceived this amazing story.
Anderson, an award-winning Hollywood stuntman to the stars like Will Smith, Denzel Washington and Jamie Foxx, shot the film over three years in Jamaica, Ghana, Canada and the USA. The film features interviews with world-renowned scholars, African nationals, Maroon officials and present-day Jamaican citizens (both Maroon and non-Maroon), while simultaneously capturing Roy’s personal journey of self-discovery from Maroon society to North America.
Akwantu: The Journey is available today for digital download at www.vimeo.com. In addition, viewers can visit the film’s website www.akwantuthemovie.com to download the Akwantu: the Journey Discussion Guide, designed to promote dialogue and debate around the film. The home use DVD will be released on Amazon, summer 2013.
Check out the trailer below: