The Photograph, the new documentary by Sherman The Jesus, will be released in the summer of 2021. The development of The Photograph started over 5 years ago. In 2016, the film plan was selected by a prestigious jury of the Dutch Media Fund for a development contribution in the open call for Essayistic documentary. Amsterdam distributor Amstelfilm will release the documentary in Dutch film theatres from summer 2021.
Joost Hiensch of Shosho has designed a poster that draws inspiration from the photography of James Van Der Zee and Jamel Shabazz, and from the AfriCobra movement.
One hundred years after his grandfather, director Sherman De Jesus travels to New York. The reason is the only photo he has of his grandfather: a stately, time-affected black-and-white portrait of Juan de Jesus, a black man dressed in a worn-out tropical suit. With a look of excitement and pride, he looks at us and takes us back in time, to a world in which he was practically “invisible” because of the color of his skin. On the back of the photo is a stamp: from the Harlem studio of the famous photographer James Van Der Zee, the maker of the photo.
This accompanied by an original soundtrack by Randal Corsen interspersed with swinging 20s jazz by Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington. The blues classic Backlash Blues by Nina Simone with lyrics by poet Langston Hughes and the broad sonic lexicon of jazz, Afrobeat, dub, Caribbean soca and grime by the Sons of Kemet. The inspiring quest of De Jesus is portrayed by enchanting camerawork by Milton Kam.