IMDb > Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids (2004)
Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids
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Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids (2004) More at IMDbPro »

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Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids -- Two documentary filmmakers chronicle their time in Sonagchi, Calcutta and the relationships they developed with children of prostitutes who work the city's notorious red light district.

Overview

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7.8/10   6,428 votes »
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Release Date:
29 July 2005 (Taiwan) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
Two documentary filmmakers chronicle their time in Sonagchi, Calcutta and the relationships they developed with children of prostitutes who work the city's notorious red light district. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Awards:
Won Oscar. Another 18 wins & 3 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A testimony to the transforming power of art See more (66 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)
Kochi
Avijit Halder (as Avijit)
Shanti Das (as Shanti)
Manik
Puja Mukerjee (as Puja)
Gour
Suchitra
Tapasi
Mamuni
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Zana Briski ... Herself "Zana Auntie" (uncredited)

Directed by
Zana Briski 
Ross Kauffman 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Zana Briski 
Ross Kauffman 

Produced by
Pamela Tanner Boll .... co-executive producer
Zana Briski .... producer
Lisa Cohen .... imaging producer
Geralyn White Dreyfous .... executive producer
Jannat Gargi .... imaging producer
Andrew Herwitz .... associate producer
Ross Kauffman .... producer
Ellen Peck .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
John McDowell 
 
Cinematography by
Zana Briski 
Ross Kauffman 
 
Film Editing by
Nancy Baker 
Ross Kauffman 
 
Sound Department
Daniel Baruch .... sound engineer
Eric Milano .... sound editor
Tom Paul .... sound re-recording mixer
Tom Paul .... supervising sound editor
Harikumar Pillai .... sound recordist
Anne Pope .... sound editor
Steve F.B. Smith .... sound consultant: dolby
 
Visual Effects by
Bruno George .... imaging director
 
Animation Department
Frank Ferrigno .... photo animator
 
Editorial Department
Chris Mole .... on-line editor
Ruchika Muchhala .... post-production assistant
Benjamin Murray .... on-line editor
George Panos .... assistant editor
Bill Scott .... color timer
Eric Welsh .... associate editor
Niels Dachler .... on-line editor (uncredited)
Phillip Lefesi .... additional editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Daniel Baruch .... music producer
Daniel Baruch .... music recording mixer
Cameron Brown .... musician: bass
Ty Burhoe .... musician
Arnab Chakraborthy .... musician: sarod (as Arnab Chakrabarty)
Shivalik Ghoshal .... musician: tabla
Steve Gorn .... musician
Ananda Kahn .... musician: sarod
John McDowell .... music producer
John McDowell .... music recording mixer
John McDowell .... musician: drums and keyboards
Tracy McKnight .... music consultant
Allyn Miner .... musician
John Vartan .... musician
Eric Milano .... assistant music engineer (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Partha Banerjee .... office translator
Diana Barrett .... support
Betsy Bliss .... additional supporter
Hunter Boll .... support
Pamela Tanner Boll .... support (as Pamela Boll)
Stephen Carroll .... insurance: D.R. Reiff & Associates
Malobika Choudhury .... office translator (as Malobika Chaudhuri)
Jim Dreyfous .... additional supporter
Lynn Edens .... support
Wesley Edens .... support
Kathy Eldon .... additional supporter: Creative Visions
Vikram Jayanti .... creative consultant
Amy Kauffman .... support
Erika Kauffman .... additional supporter
Robert Kauffman .... support
Rodd Kauffman .... additional supporter
Bari Khan .... office translator
Wendy Knack .... additional supporter
Tom Langtry .... additional supporter
Vadi Langtry .... additional supporter
Bruce Laski .... accounting services
Cristina Linclau .... coordinator: exhibition
Cathy McCormack .... additional supporter
Tony McCormack .... additional supporter
Susan J. Mitchell .... additional supporter
Priyadarshini Nandy .... location translator
Ellen Peck .... additional supporter
Harikumar Pillai .... researcher
Harikumar Pillai .... script supervisor
Harikumar Pillai .... translator
Samuel D. Pollard .... creative consultant (as Sam Pollard)
John Rocco .... title designer
Annie Roney .... international sales: Roco Films
Arup Sengupta .... location translator
Craig Severance .... support
Kristy Severance .... support
Michael Shimkin .... additional supporter
John Starr .... additional supporter
George Stranahan .... additional supporter
Jim Swartz .... support
Susan Swartz .... support
Jan D. Unger .... additional supporter
Bob Vila .... support
Marjorie Weiss Martay .... additional supporter
Robert Wise .... legal services
 
Thanks
Bonnie Abaunza .... special thanks
Charles Abbott .... special thanks
Ananda Abinou .... acknowledgment
Adriana Alcala .... special thanks
Christopher Anderson-Bazzoli .... special thanks (as Chris Anderson-Bazzoli)
Raney Aronson .... special thanks
Heike Bachmann .... acknowledgment
Randall Balsmeyer .... special thanks (as Randy Balsmeyer)
Katie Barnes .... acknowledgment
Maggie Barrett .... special thanks
Susan Behr .... special thanks
Janie Joseland Bennett .... very special thanks
Rachèle Bevilacqua .... acknowledgment
Maina Bhagat .... special thanks
Bob Bianchini .... acknowledgment
Bodhi .... acknowledgment
Samantha N. Box .... special thanks
Richard Briski .... acknowledgment
Violette Briski .... acknowledgment
Merav Brooks .... special thanks
Micha Bruinvels .... special thanks
Matisse Bustos .... special thanks
Anthony Carbone .... acknowledgment
Max Charruyer .... special thanks
Billy Childs .... special thanks
Larry Confino .... special thanks
Nicholas Conover .... special thanks
Sak Costanzo .... special thanks (as Sak Constanzo)
Miriam Cutler .... special thanks
Diana Danin .... special thanks
Bishakha Datta .... special thanks
Heidi DeRuiter .... special thanks
Carlos Duran .... very special thanks
Tylor Durand .... acknowledgment
Chris Edwards .... special thanks
Simon Egleton .... special thanks
Margaret Engel .... special thanks
Jason Eskenazi .... acknowledgment
Elliott Fey .... special thanks
Tobias Fields .... special thanks
Attilia M. Fierro .... special thanks (as Fierro Attilia)
Sara Finmann .... special thanks
Drika Freire .... special thanks
Helen Garrett .... special thanks
Eddie Gartz .... special thanks
Árpad Gerecsey .... special thanks
Mary Giudera .... acknowledgment
Anders Goldfarb .... acknowledgment
Julie Goldstein .... special thanks
Peter Golub .... special thanks
Gail Goodman .... special thanks
Mylene Graziano .... special thanks
Tracy Griffith .... acknowledgment
Trevor Brodie Hall .... special thanks (as Trevor Hall)
Melissa Halsey .... acknowledgment
Sybrand Hekking .... special thanks
Lisa Heller .... very special thanks
Lee Hirsch .... special thanks
Jaime Holguin .... acknowledgment
Sarie Horowitz .... special thanks
Lana Iny .... special thanks
Audrey Jones .... special thanks
Nathaniel Kahn .... special thanks
Anand Kamalakar .... special thanks
Daniel Katz .... very special thanks
Barbara Kauffman .... acknowledgment
Richard Kauffman .... acknowledgment
Ron Kauffman .... acknowledgment
Kathy Kelehan .... special thanks
Senain Kheshgi .... special thanks (as Senain Keshgi)
Michaela Kirst .... special thanks
Bernice Koch .... special thanks
Bart Kummer .... special thanks (as Dr. Bart Kummer)
Rama Lakshmi .... special thanks
Gara Lamarche .... special thanks
Bob LaSala .... special thanks
Meredith Lavitt .... special thanks
Phillip Lefesi .... special thanks
Aileen Leijten .... special thanks (as Aileen Leitjen)
Michelle Lepak .... acknowledgment
Alfred Linde .... acknowledgment
Dina Linde .... acknowledgment
Keith Linde .... acknowledgment
Laurette Linde .... acknowledgment
Don Loga .... special thanks
Bonnie Long .... special thanks
Maggie MacKay .... special thanks
Jeff Magness .... acknowledgment
Mr. Maheshwari .... special thanks
Mrs. Maheshwari .... special thanks
Jessica Manzi .... special thanks
Tim Mapp .... special thanks
Helen Marcus .... special thanks
Aimee Marks .... special thanks
Jim McDonald .... special thanks
Jim McKenna .... special thanks
Sarah McNeill .... acknowledgment
Jacques Menasche .... special thanks
Ismail Merchant .... special thanks
Raymond W. Merritt .... special thanks
Joel Meyerowitz .... special thanks
Mookie .... acknowledgment
Atiyah Muhammad .... special thanks
Michiel Munneke .... special thanks
Sheila Nevins .... very special thanks
Zohar Nir-Amitin .... special thanks
Liz Ogilvie .... special thanks
Kerstin Park-Labella .... special thanks
Geeta Patel .... special thanks
Karen Paul .... special thanks
Catherine Pledge .... special thanks
Robert Pledge .... very special thanks
Gary Pollard .... special thanks
Joe Popp .... special thanks
Mohan Prakash .... special thanks
Annie Proulx .... special thanks
Govind Punwani .... special thanks
Ambreen Qureshi .... special thanks
Ana Racelis .... special thanks
Vinay Rajpal .... special thanks
Satyajit Ray .... acknowledgment
Robert Redford .... special thanks
Evan Reed .... special thanks
Ish Reina .... special thanks
Jim Rider .... special thanks
Fred Ritchin .... special thanks
Lizette Rivera .... special thanks
Don Robinson .... special thanks
Shalu Rozario .... special thanks
Steve Ruhl .... special thanks
Pete Sabin .... acknowledgment
Nanita Greene Samuels .... acknowledgment
Gregoire Sauter .... special thanks
Diana Schmidt .... special thanks
Kirk Simon .... special thanks
Victor Sira .... acknowledgment
Calvin Skaggs .... special thanks (as Cal Skaggs)
Jeffrey D. Smith .... special thanks
Alexandra Spadea .... special thanks
Reinhold Speigler .... acknowledgment
Chuck Spezzano .... acknowledgment
Lency Spezzano .... acknowledgment
Spirit .... acknowledgment
Sploodge .... acknowledgment
Buddy Squires .... special thanks
Lina Srivastava .... special thanks
Heather Stephenson .... special thanks
Michael Stranahan .... special thanks
The Tarrant Family .... acknowledgment
Jay Tarrant .... acknowledgment
Mary Tchorbajian .... special thanks
Allan Ure .... special thanks
Mark Urman .... very special thanks
Joyce Vaughn .... special thanks
Fred Walker .... acknowledgment
Gary Weingarten .... acknowledgment
Scott Weir .... special thanks
Sean Welch .... special thanks
Diane Weyermann .... very special thanks
Alyson E. Winick .... very special thanks (as Alyson Winick)
Judy Zezmar .... special thanks
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
MPAA:
Rated R for some sequences of strong language
Runtime:
85 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Quotes:
Tapasi:Just today, I took someone's picture and he bad mouthed me. I didn't mind. You really have to put up with a lot if you want to learn to do something well.See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Pairon mein bandhan haiSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
48 out of 53 people found the following review useful.
A testimony to the transforming power of art, 28 February 2005
Author: Howard Schumann from Vancouver, B.C.

In India, red light districts are booming in cities like Mumbai, Delhi, and Calcutta where millions of transient men live and work far away from their homes and wives. The oldest and the largest of these is Sonagachi in Calcutta where the women have organized into a sex trade union of more than 5,000 active workers and have spread awareness about AIDS and HIV, making Sonagachi one of the few red light districts in the country that does not accept clients without condoms. Subject to a class system that puts them on the lowest rung of Indian society, the mostly illegitimate children of the sex workers are also expected to "join the line" when they reach a certain age. Minor girls are the most sought after in the brothels and secure the highest price, making it very difficult for the parents to let them leave, especially when the only other alternative may be the starvation of their entire family.

In 1997, photographer Zana Briski was assigned to capture images of Sonagachi. While the women were reluctant to let her into their lives, the children quickly responded and Briski became a resident of the brothel for five years. During that time, she provided the children with point and shoot cameras, set up classes in photography, and trained them to document the harsh reality of their daily lives. The result is the Oscar nominated documentary Born Into Brothels, a film that takes us inside the squalid brothels and allows us to see the world through the eyes of some of its most vulnerable residents, five girls and three boys, ages ten to fourteen. Shot in dazzling color using a digital camera, we get to know the children through their photos.

There is Kochi, age 10, who is strong, resilient, tough, and sensitive. Avijit, age 12, seems to be the most talented of the group. He draws, paints, takes pictures and, through Briski's patient efforts, was able to obtain a passport to be a part of a photo-editing panel in Amsterdam. Shanti, age 11, is most eager to learn but is troubled and often feuds with her brother Manik. The others: Gour, Puja, Tapasi, and Suchitra all show a unique ability to find beauty in their ugly environment. The film documents Briski's uphill efforts to place the children in boarding schools to escape the cycle of poverty and exploitation. Some manage to find places in the schools but the biggest obstacle is shown to be the children's own mothers and guardians, often protective out of the sheer necessity for survival.

Born Into Brothels is a testimony to the transforming power of art and of one individual's ability to make a difference. Showing the children's art to Western audiences has helped to raise money for the Sonagachi children's education. It may also serve to make people more aware of the potential talent of millions of other third world children who struggle daily for existence on the streets, the orphanages, and the refugee camps of our teeming world.

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