Waorani. Guardians of the Amazon

  • 12.15–1.15 PM
  • 06 June 2023
  • Cinema Radar

The Waorani Women tell us about their life before contact and the impact of the globalized world on their culture; about the first contact in 1956 with the evangelical missionaries and the inevitable change in their lives after the relentless arrival of the extractive companies in the Amazon jungle. The ancestral cosmovision of our protagonists brings a magical tone to the narrative: myths, songs and stories that show their profound relationship with nature and serve as the narrative’s guiding threads. Testimonies in Wao Tededo, which allow us to hear the Amazonian voices of those who refused to learn the colonist Spanish, contrast with the economic and political history of an oil-producing nation. The Waorani Women’s attempt to adapt to the globalized capitalist world, in order to confront the territorial, cultural and spiritual invasion suffered by their people, is an example of the tenacity of the human spirit, which refuses the extinction and subjugation of the Amazon.


Story line

The impact of the globalized world on the Waorani indigenous nation from the perspective and ancestral worldview of its women, who organized themselves to resist the territorial and cultural invasion suffered by the Amazon.


Luisana Carcelén Varganciano

Documentalist, Quito – Ecuador, 1983. Since 2007 works in the preservation of intangible heritage with indigenous peoples. Audiovisual production for national and international organizations, related to conservation issues, socio-cultural integration and education, script writing for production companies. Cultural Manager. Volunteer since 2013 of the Waorani Women’s Association AMWAE, audiovisual registration and representation management. Visual Artist, exhibitor of the XI National Exhibition of Contemporary Art Aragua, Venezuela, 2011, and in several private exhibitions. University Professor (2015-2020). Master in Post Production, Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, Spain (2014). B.A. in Communication with mention in Literature, Universidad Católica del Ecuador (2009). Waorani. Guardians of the Amazon is her Opera Prima.



JAMAICANOPROBLEM, is an Italian-Ecuadorian explorer and filmmaker, who through his work seeks to highlight the mystery and natural beauty of the “four worlds” that can be found in the Ecuador: the Andes, the Amazon, the Pacific Coast and the Galapagos. His foray into the world of cinema came with the biographical work El cazador (2013), a short film that was part of the Official Selection at the Short Film Corner in Cannes. In 2015 he served as Executive Producer of the documentary Highway of Tears made in association with Human Rights Watch, which won the Malibu Film Festival. At the end of that same year, he finished the Fantastic Realism manifesto, a proposal for a new cinematographic genre whose main objective is to record reality in cinema from new perspectives. His proof of concept is the 2019 film A Son of Man, which he directed, produced, and acted in. The film premiered at the Shanghai International Film Festival and was selected to officially represent Ecuador in the Best Foreign Film category at the 91st Academy Awards (Oscar Awards). It was also nominated at important festivals in North America and Europe, obtaining numerous awards, including the Grand Prix at the Rhode lsland Festival (USA) and the Best Documentary Award at the Terra di Siena Film Festival. With this film, JAMAICANOPROBLEM establishes his aesthetic signature as a director and creates a new cinematographic paradigm. He is currently in the development of new productions that rescue the natural biodiversity of his country of origin, among which are: Waorani Guardians of the Amazon (filmed in Yasuní) and Lions, a project to be developed in the Islands Galapagos.


Original Title: Waorani Omede Beye Ante Nee Adani
Original Language: Wao Tededo – Spanish – English
Subtitles: ENG- SPA-ITA
Month and Year of Production: December 2022
Color/Black and White: Color
Camera: Canon 6D
Audio: Stereo
Country of Production: Ecuador
Duration: 00:35:34
Director: Luisana Carcelén, JAMAICANOPROBLEM
Production: Paracas Independent Film in co-production AMWAE Women Association
Co-Produced by: Manuel Cardenal
Cast: AMWAE Women Association
Photography: Luisana Carcelén and  Manuel Cardenal
Editing: Matías Kuykendall, Xue Xue, Tarik Nuñez, Luisana Carcelén
Music / Original Soundtrack: Raymi Morales
Awards: Honorable Mention Madonie Film Festival, Region of Sicily, 2022
Development Award National Film Council of Ecuador, CnCine, 2015.
Development Institute for the Promotion of Creativity and Innovation, Ministry of Culture -Ecuador, 2019
Honorable Mention CRIESPAL – UNESCO 2014 (project)