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Dirt For Dinner
Still from the film "Dirt for Dinner" by Branwen Okpako. A collage of 20 heads in a square grid.
© Katja Clos
  • Director

    Branwen Okpako

  • Germany / 2000
    75 min. / 35 mm / Original version with English subtitles

  • Original language


DRECKFRESSER (2000) is Branwen Okpako's graduation film from the German Film and Television Academy Berlin (DFFB). It documents the rise and fall of Sam Meffire, the first Black police officer in the former East Germany. Son of a white mother and a Cameroonian student, he posed as "the Saxon" for an advertising campaign by the Sächsische Zeitung newspaper in the early 1990s, while Heinz Eggert, Saxony’s Minister of the Interior at the time, liked to make public appearances with him. But Meffire resigned from the police force to set up a security firm and later turned to crime, with the Dresden Regional Court eventually sentencing him to nine years in jail in 1996. DRECKFRESSER does not offer any explanations. It centres on the eloquent Sam Meffire, but the filmmaker also talks to his mother, former colleagues and people working in the media. Their perspectives vary, contradicting or reinforcing each other, which is one reason why the film triggered a lot of debate at certain festivals. "I'm not into documentaries that try to tell the truth. That's not possible because film is something that is made," commented the director at the 2001 Berlinale Forum. (Enoka Ayemba)

Branwen Okpako was born in 1969 in Lagos, Nigeria. She studied political science and later film, and works as a writer and director. Her film Die Geschichte der Auma Obama (2011) received numerous awards. Dreckfresser was shown at the Berlinale Forum in 2001, and Fluch der Medea at Forum Expanded in 2014. Branwen Okpako is Associate Professor at UC Davis.

Production company Deutsche Film- und Fernsehakademie Berlin (DFFB) (Berlin, Federal Republic of Germany). Director Branwen Okpako. Written by Branwen Okpako. Cinematography Susanne Schüle. Editing Calle Overweg, Bettina Blickwede, Gilda Rosskamp. Sound Dirk Niemeier. Assistant director Christina Schachtschabel. Commissioning editor Jörg Schneider. Co-production ZDF / Das kleine Fernsehspiel. With Sam Njankouo Meffire.

Films: 1995: Landing (11 min.). 1999: LoveLoveLiebe (10 min.). 2000: Dreckfresser / Dirt for Dinner. 2003: Tal der Ahnungslosen (85 min.). 2011: Die Geschichte der Auma Obama (79 min.). 2014: Fluch der Medea (43 min.).

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