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In the Shadow of Gold Mountain

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Karen Cho, a fifth-generation Canadian of mixed heritage, discovered that half her family wasn't welcome in the country they called home. While Canada encouraged and rewarded immigration from Europe, it imposed laws that singled out the Chinese as unwanted and unwelcome.

Cho's film, In the Shadow of Gold Mountain, takes her from Montreal to Vancouver to uncover stories from the last living survivors of the Chinese Head Tax and Exclusion Act. This dark chapter in our history, from 1885 until 1947, plunged the Chinese community in Canada into decades of debt and family separation.

At the centre of the film are personal accounts of extraordinary Chinese Canadians who survived an era that threatened to eradicate their entire community. Through a rich melding of history, poetry and raw emotion, this documentary sheds light on an era that shaped the identity of generations, with deeply moving testimonials, it reveals the profound ways this history still casts its shadow.

In the Shadow of Gold Mountain was produced as part of the Reel Diversity Competition for emerging filmmakers of colour. Reel Diversity is a National Film Board of Canada initiative in partnership with CBC Newsworld.



2004, 43 min 04 s

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Honorable Mention: Category: Humanities
International Film and Video Festival
November 9 to 13 2005, Columbus - USA

Golden Sheaf Award - Category: Best Multicultural Documentary
Yorkton Film Festival
May 26 to 29 2005, Yorkton - Canada

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