Seeking Funding for Defenders of Life

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Tue, 07/15/2014 - 13:42 -- Nick Dager

Defenders of LifeDefenders of Life is the first fictional portrayal of this indigenous community of Costa Rica. Igor Darbo feels strongly that this story needs to be told. It is the story of the Ngobe people, an indigenous community of Costa Rica, covering their lives, community, culture and struggles. Darbo, a resident of San Jose, Costa Rica's capital, is in the process of making the first fiction feature film with and about the Ngobes.

"The film reveals the dilemmas of an indigenous people and an endangered civilization," said Darbo, an independent film producer who has provided much of the funding for this project to date. "The subject matter in the script deals with the delicate issues of early marriage and teenage pregnancy among the Ngobe people, who are struggling for cultural survival. Our approach is not judgmental. We want to show the complexity of choices faced by today's Ngobe men and women if they are to survive as a civilization."

The film is aptly titled Defenders of Life.

This movie was filmed on location in Costa Rica earlier this year, using a non-intrusive international crew of four who shared the life of the community during the shoot. The dialogues are in Spanish, English and for the first time, Ngobe language.

Defenders of Life centers on the individual destinies of Dona Carmen, the controversial tribe leader, her murdered daughter and her adolescent granddaughter Esmeralda.

With the filming complete, Defenders of Life now enters the post-production process. This involves editing, visual effects, color correction, sound editing, an original Soundtrack and a digital cinema package.

Darbo has estimated the cost to be $29,000 and in order to generate this funding, he has launched an Indiegogo campaign. The Indiegogo page, which includes clips from the film, can be viewed at

Donations of any amount are welcome. For a $10 contribution, backers will receive a link to view the film as a digital download. For a $25 pledge, contributors get a copy of the DVD. Those who donate $100 will see their names credited in the film. Alongside the traditional perks mentioned, Darbo is offering exclusive Ngobe artwork, traditional woven handbags called the 'chacara', traditional dresses and shirts.

"This is an important film because it will educate people all over the world about the plight of these indigenous people," Darbo said.

For additional information, visit