Directed by Lloyd Ross • Documentary • 2007 • 52 minutes
An American in Sophiatown puts Come Back, Africa into the context of the time it was made ( 1957-1958) - recreating the sense of danger, the intrigues which were necessary to make the film under the nose of the apartheid regime. We come to learn of Rogosin's deep political motivations for choosing this subject of apartheid and to better understand themes involved in Come Back, Africa. Through interviews with Rogosin and archival material, the film recreates the making of the film and the world it reflected.
Fifty years after the film was made, acclaimed South African writer Lewis Nkosis takes us back to the places where the script was written and shot. In a poignant moment of emotion Nkosis revisits Sophiatown, walking back into his memory to a place which no longer exists as it was and to the apartment were he helped write the script. This emotional moment creates the universal feeling of time passing and of places and worlds that disappear.
An American in Sophiatown was conceived and produced by Michael Rogosin who also researched and conducted the interviews used during the film with the exception of the interviews of his father Lionel Rogosin, which were conducted by Russian filmmaker Marina Golodovskaya. Michael Rogosin met prize winning South African film director Lloyd Ross (best documentary Durban Film Festival 2009) in 2006 when filming the return of Lewis Nkosis to Sophiatown and they collaborated together to make the film.