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Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Adventurous journey of a rare white lion cub who rises above many challenges.

Peru Productions presents the family adventure motion picture White Lion directed by South African director and cinematographer Michael Swan. Scripted by Janet van Eeden and Ivan Milborrow, the film is based on a story by Rodney Fuhr and realised by world renowned lion expert Kevin Richardson who has produced the picture with Carine Stander serving as line producer. Ilana Fuhr and Rodney Fuhr are Executive Producers.

The film tells the story of a rare and magnificent African white lion named Letsatsi and invites viewers to follow his journey to become one of the most powerful and revered lions in all of Africa. Rejected by his pride because of his unusual colour, Letsatsi is forced at a very young age to learn how to survive alone in the unforgiving wilds.

This remarkable tale narrated by a wise African storyteller (played by John Kani) intertwines the stuff of African mysticism with the reality of a lion’s solitary journey of discovery.

The Shangaan (a local tribe of African people) have always believed that a white lion represents the coming of a new age. It was told in the stories of their forefathers that the first white lion was seen after a shooting star fell to earth in their remote valley. But many years have passed since a white lion was last seen in that valley and, as they suffered through terrible hardships, the Shangaan believed that the white lion’s mysterious disappearance was connected to death of their last great chief.

The healer’s son, Gisani, (Played by Thabo Malema) is tasked by his father to fulfil a mission of great importance to their people. He proudly accepts the challenge, unaware that his journey will lead him to the sacred white lion. From their first meeting, Gisani realises that his destiny is to protect Letsatsi at all costs.

Letsatsi’s intrepid and sometimes heartbreaking journey will lead him through many challenges and dangers as he grows from helpless cub to lion. Gisani’s parallel journey will test his faith, strength and courage as he, too, crosses the threshold into manhood. Ultimately both Letsatsi and Gisani must face their greatest enemy, the greed of the trophy hunter, to whom legends are worthless and the coat of a white lion, priceless.

White Lion was shot on location at The Kingdom of the White Lion, an enterprise 50 miles outside of the city of Johannesburg, along the Crocodile River, established especially for this film. It marks the first production entirely about lions starring “real” lions from South Africa. “To date most lion pictures shot in South Africa, have seen the import of trained lions,” says Kevin Richardson. “Our lions look great… they’re lean, mean and heroic – not spoiled, fat and lazy.”

The picture features a minimum of human beings, a criterion which was put in place to make sure the story is told entirely from the lion’s perspective.

“With a lot of other animal pictures produced, the animals aren’t that tame and are not that easy to control,” says Michael Swan. “In this film, however, all the lions we have used have been hand-reared and they all have a very good relationship with the three animal wranglers. They have been very easy to work with, but not always easy to get to do precisely what you want them to do, and that’s the nature of anything that involves animals or children!“