“Sleepwalking in the Rift”, a film by Cary Fukunaga for Maiyet.
In the beautiful words of Emma Lightfoot:
“Living on instinct means stepping into the unknown, both behind and in front of the camera. This is a daring short, devised and shot in Kenya across three days, by director Cary Fukunaga, in collaboration with Maiyet.
Wearing key pieces from the Resort 2013 Collection, actress Haley Bennett plays a young woman caught between her past and her future. On this first visit to East Africa, she crosses paths with Fares Fares, the ranger charged with being her guide. They have something in common. And when they meet, a light within them both begins to flicker. Set against epic landscapes, two gentle souls rest in the moment, drawn together in a haunting and missed connection.
In commissioning film director Cary Fukunaga to make a series of films, Maiyet took a leap into cinema and placed their trust in an artist whose skill they admire.
The story of how this film was shot is just as important as the story of unspoken human connection within. Cary deliberately chose an honest, reactive style of working in spite of his love of carefully composed frames, because Maiyet is built upon a principle of transparency and collaboration.
On the back of handful of conversations and a three-line treatment, Cary traveled to Africa with Maiyet and his team. No script, no preconceptions.
They shot for three days straight, improvising and rehearsing on the spot and reacting to the changing landscape there and then.
For a director used to his own perfectionism, this was a different experience of filmmaking. When it was time to view the rushes, Cary freely admits that he was nervous. But seeing the footage, he knew that the project had worked, in his own words, ‘take a breath. Ok. There’s something there’.
For actress Haley Bennett and many of the crew, this was their first time in Kenya. As the team drove between locations they passed by the edge of the Great Rift Valley and stopped in the road. Before them stood the endless panorama of East Africa. Someone noticed that Haley had tears in her eyes, overcome by the beauty. This is the spirit of Maiyet and the essence of Cary’s films. If you dare to search out new territory and look beyond, you chance upon something real and unforgettable.”