'Bang Bang Club' Movie Documents Apartheid in S. Africa





The Bang Bang Club is the title of a documentary film currently in production that examines South Africa during the last days of apartheid, and the impact that violence had on four photojournalists covering the conflict.

The movie is based on The Bang-Bang Club: Snapshots from a Hidden War (2000), a book documenting the lives of those four photogs: Ken Oosterbroek, Kevin Carter, Greg Marinovich and Joao Silva. The book was written by Marinovich and Silva, the two of that group who survived.

The New York Times photojournalism blog is running a series of photo/audio slideshows with the work and voices of those photographers. Today, Joao Silva retells the story of what was happening outside and within when he shot the photograph above -- a man being hacked to death by an angry mob.

<em>Snip from series introduction:</em>

"Their bond was formed in the field, where injustice and death lurked. It was a camaraderie that came from the constant experience of mortal danger -- Mr. Oosterbroek was killed during a gun battle in April 1994. They also shared a mutual understanding of how important it was to document the tumultuous events unfolding in front of them as apartheid gave way and South Africans struggled to form a new government. It was a battle most brutally waged in townships populated mainly by poor blacks.

(...) "Mr. Marinovich was fairly new to photojournalism in 1991 when he won a Pulitzer Prize for a series of photographs of supporters of South Africa's African National Congress burning alive a man they believed to be a Zulu spy. "I had been too scared to say anything to try to stop it," Mr. Marinovich said, "and so that really disturbed me about myself and who I thought I was at the moment."



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