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The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam

Directed by Ann Marie Fleming
Canada, 2003 (animation / documentary, 88 minutes, colour, English)
The Magical Life of Long Tack Sam
Photo © National Film Board of Canada

Film Description:
"Long Tack Sam was an internationally renowned Chinese acrobat and magician. He overcame isolation, poverty, cultural and linguistic barriers, extreme racism and world wars to become one of the most successful vaudeville acts of his time. His showmanship was unrivalled, yet he refused to appear in movies because of the way Chinese were portrayed at the time. Why don't we know anything about him? Filmmaker Ann Marie Fleming travels the globe searching for the story of her great-grandfather, the cosmopolitan Long Tack Sam. To unravel the mystery of a man she knows nothing about, she turns to family, friends, acrobats and magicians. Their anecdotes and memories, interwoven with gorgeous animated archival material, paint a visually stunning portrait of a fascinating individual, a particular world at a particular time. A celebration of the spirit of Long Tack Sam's magic and art, this richly textured first person road movie is an exhilarating testament to his legacy and a prismatic tour through the 20th Century. It all begins in a small village in China..."
-- National Film Board of Canada (source)

Film Credits (partial):
Written by: Ann Marie Fleming
Produced by: Ann Marie Fleming, Svend-Erik Eriksen, Rina Fraticelli
Narrator: Ann Marie Fleming
Cinematography: Ann Marie Fleming
Animation: Nathaniel Akin, Bruce Alcock, Cesare Battista, Hannah Cho, Mark Cutler, Ted Dave, Hillary Denny, Iain Gardner, Ian Godfrey, Scott Kiborn, Ruby Li Long, Ceile Prowse, Patrick Siemer, Tim Stuby, Ted Tozer, Jorge Veloso, Younger Yang
Film Editing: Ann Marie Fleming, Ileana Pietrobruno
Music: Patric Caird
Production Company: National Film Board of Canada / Office national du film du Canada, Long Tack Film Inc.
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