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“Dilli Dark” Examines Racism and Identity From the Perspective of a Nigerian Immigrant Living in India

Dibakar Das Roy’s movie explores the challenges of being an outsider in India by combining historical contexts with modern social analysis.
April 22, 2024
10:30 am

“Dilli Dark,” a film exploring racism, identity, and the life of a Nigerian immigrant in India, will debut in May.


Directed by Dibakar Das Roy, this collaboration between Indian and Nigerian filmmakers is set to provide a fresh take on long-standing themes like colonialism, societal biases, and the impact of social media.


“Dilli Dark” follows the journey of Michael Okeke, a Nigerian student in Delhi. While navigating the difficulties of living in a new city, Michael becomes involved in the drug trade and searches for self-discovery with a mysterious “god woman” and her ashram.


However, this is not simply a modern story. Das Roy’s clever storytelling alternates between 1240 and 2023, enabling the film to delve into a neglected history of Africans in India. The story links Queen Razia Sultan’s love affair with dark-skinned foreigner Jamal-ud-Din Yaqut to modern-day challenges encountered by Michael Okeke, indicating that certain societal issues have endured over time.


“Dilli Dark” offers a thought-provoking and entertaining cinematic experience with cleverly satirized portrayals of colonialism, racism, and the demonization of foreigners. Das Roy’s shift from historical to contemporary stories encourages viewers to ponder the lasting impact of bias and the shared human condition.


The film stars a skilled ensemble cast that includes Samuel Abiola Robinson, Geetika Vidya Ohlyan, Stutee Ghosh, and Shantanu Anam.


“Dilli Dark” is a film produced by Udayan Das Roy and Dibakar Das Roy, scheduled to premiere at the 31st New York African Film Festival, which will take place from May 8 to 14.


Check out the trailer here.


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