Award-winning film studio Stelo Stories and the DuSable Museum of African American History announced the release of the trailer for the upcoming vertical film titled Equiano.Stories debuting exclusively on Instagram this month.
DuSable Museum of African American History is the nation’s oldest independent museum of Black history. The announcement is timely with all the Black History Month programming being debuted across platforms.
The upcoming film begs the question: what if an African child in 1756 had Instagram when he was enslaved?
The feature film brings to life the memoir of Olaudah Equiano, who was kidnapped and enslaved as a young boy in West Africa in 1756. Equiano.Stories give a modern voice to an 18th-century memoir.
Followers of @Equiano.Stories will meet 11-year-old Equiano and watch his story unfold as he posts about 400 individual stories, totaling 80 minutes of content, over the first 48 hours of the film’s release. Just like today’s Instagram influencers, Equiano will share moments of his day. From being a carefree boy in his village with his loving family and rich culture to the fear and confusion of being kidnapped, up to the harrowing experience of life aboard a slave ship, viewers will get a front-row seat from their phones.
Equiano went on to become an influential figure in history. After buying his freedom at about 20 years old, Equiano moved to London and later published his best-selling memoir in 1789. The firsthand account was critical in stopping the trading of enslaved people by England, the world’s biggest exporter of enslaved Africans at the time and remains one of the era’s only firsthand accounts of life in Africa written by an African author.
Equiano.Stories” follows Stelo’s groundbreaking release of Eva.Stories, the diary of a teenage Holocaust victim re-told through Instagram that captured 300 million views within 48 hours of its release. Equiano.Stories is the second film in a series from Stelo Stories that takes the stories of young people who documented their lives during extreme moments in history and connects them with their 21st-century peers through social media.
“These young people had a pen and paper to tell their stories. We give them a phone, social media, and other technologies to allow them to communicate directly with their 21st-century peers,” says Maya Kochavi, Stelo co-founder and one of the film’s creators.
Stelo Stories is an award-winning film studio that creates vertical, scripted, high production value content that is meant to be viewed on mobile because that’s where the audience is. Its first series tells the true stories of 10 incredible young people who documented their lives during extreme moments in history.
Equiano.Stories will premiere exclusively on @Equiano.Stories Instagram profile on Feb. 16. Get more information here and watch the trailer below.