The Shark People of Fiji


An Australian woman living on a remote Fijian island with her indigenous husband must overcome cultural barriers and extraordinary supernatural forces that threaten their love.

THE SHARK PEOPLE OF FIJI is a cross-cultural drama with supernatural elements set on a remote Fijian island. Middle-aged Sydney business woman, Christine, has relocated to be with her new husband, Kavekini, chief of a small village. It’s her struggle for acceptance in a strange world where turtles are slaughtered for food; sharks revered as gods and ancient protectors.

The couple have a small farm with a goat called Harold and some chooks which Christine calls her ‘Girls’. She finds a friend and teacher in Tafuqa, a young village boy who slowly helps her learn the local language.

When a tragedy strikes the village, Christine feels isolated and despondent, unable to share the grieving. Being village chief, Kave is expected to provide food for the wake so poor Harold and Christine’s beloved Girls are sacrificed. At her lowest, she’s grieving for the boy who drowned, the goat, her Girls and herself – and she grieves alone.

Kave in his wisdom takes Christine prawning in the river one night. He sees wet footprints on the bank, realises they’re being watched – but doesn’t tell Christine given her fragile state. Later that night, while Kave sleeps beside her, Christine wakes to the sight of a river devil in a tribal mask right in her face. Confronted by Kave it flees, snatching Christine’s precious gold watch on the way. Christine is distraught. She must face the harsh reality of this strange new world. Should she stay? Is love enough? She packs her bags.

Next day she does yoga on the beach. Feeling relaxed, she goes for a swim. A huge bull shark circles her below. She freezes but she faces it calmly. They lock eyes. Time slows down. She senses an ancient wisdom dwelling within the magnificent creature.

Suddenly it turns and swims slowly out to sea.

Was the shark spirit welcoming her? This is a story about loneliness and acceptance; about the clash of western culture and Fijian mythology. Exploring the bond between humans and sharks, it’s kind of Fiji’s answer to Whale Rider (New Zealand 2002).

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