The film’s script (written by Sarah Maldoror in collaboration with Serge Michel) is based on a short story by the white Angolan writer and political activist Luandino Vieira, who had been sentenced by the Portuguese colonial regime to serve a fourteen-year term at the camp of Tarrafal in Cape Verde.
Sarah Maldoror, born Sarah Ducados in Gers, France is a black French film director. She choose her artist’s name in remembrance of The Songs of Madoror by Lautréamont. She attended a drama school in Paris. Together with her companion Mário Pinto de Andrade she received a scholarship and studied film with Mark Donskoi in Moscow in 1961-62 where she met Ousmane Sembène. She is best known for her feature film Sambizanga (1972) on the 1961-1974 war in Angola. She made a number of important documentaries too.