The Loft Film Fest is presented by the National Endowment for the Arts and Desert Diamond Casinos & Entertainment.

Winner! Best Documentary, Los Angeles Film Festival

Within the walls of Swaziland’s Likhaya Lemphilo Lensha orphanage, a great adventure is unfolding. A group of children living in Likhaya Lemphilo Lensha are being led through a workshop process by South African storyteller, Gcina Mhlophe.

“Gorgeous! Unlike any documentary you’ve ever seen.” – Davan Coogan, Entertainment Weekly

Together they dive into their collective imaginations to create Liyana, a brave young Swazi heroine who undertakes an epic adventure to rescue her stolen brothers, outsmarting many a dangerous animal and even more dangerous humans along the way. Winner of more than 25 film festival awards around the world, the gorgeous, inventive and inspiring Liyana fuses brilliantly photographed live-action footage with riveting animation, alternating between scenes of young imaginations at work and scenes that bring their story to life. Drawn from the children’s sometimes traumatic personal experiences, Liyana is a beautifully-crafted, genre-defying exploration of fable as a source of creative healing and strength. Executive-produced by Thandie Newton (Westworld). (Dir. by Aaron Kopp & Amanda Kopp, 2018, Swaziland/Qatar/USA, in English, 77 mins., Not Rated / Appropriate for ages 10+).   Other festivals: Los Angeles; New York African | Tucson Premiere

Special thanks to our community partners, DocScapes and Literacy Connects!