Accused #2 Walter Sisulu
Nicolas Champeaux, Gilles Porte
France, HTC Vive, 2018/19, 15’
Production, distribution: La Générale de Production
Artistic director, illustrator: Oerd
Base of this work are recently restored sound archives of the Rivonia trial in 1963 and 1964, when Nelson Mandela, accused number one, read a speech justifying why the ANC had resorted to violence. Sisulu, accused number two, was the first of the group to be cross-examined. Sisulu was the one who found Mandela. It was Sisulu who persuaded Mandela to join the ANC. Sisulu was his guide. Sisulu was his mentor. This VR experience allows us to relive the five days of his gripping confrontation with an overtly racist prosecutor. Sisulu, who faced the death penalty, stood up to the unrelenting aggression and gave as good as he got. Transported back into a world of secret court sessions during the apartheid nightmare, the viewer will discover the testimony of an exceptional man who instigated one of the turning points of 20th century history.
Nicolas Champeaux (1975) is a journalist, author and director. He was the permanent special correspondent of Radio France International in Johannesburg from 2007 to 2010, and then an international journalist working for the Africa department of RFI until July 2016. He now freelances. He made several audio productions on Nelson Mandela, wrote and produced several award-winning radio and web documentaries. Between 2017 and 2018, he co-directed the feature length documentary The trial against Mandela and the others. The film was shown at the Cannes Film Festival and later nominated for a César. In February 2019, he produced for France Culture radio station Ahmed et Sylvia - les lettres de l’apartheid.
Gilles Porte is a director of photography, photographer, screenwriter, and film director. He has worked as director of photography on nearly thirty feature films. He worked with Jacques Audiard, Raoul Rúiz, Xavier Durringer, Safy Nebbou, Frédéric Beigbeder, Xavier Gens, Marc Dugain, etc. In 2004, with Yolande Moreau, he co- directed Quand la mer monte, which won the César for best first film, the Prix Louis-Delluc and around 30 other awards internationally. In 2009, he directed around 100 short films Portraits/Autoportraits and the documentary Dessine-toi which mixed live action images and animation. In 2015, he directed Tantalum, an interactive production featuring binaural sound and starring Jean-Luc Bideau and François Marthouret.