Dear Shaded Viewers,
the worldwide premiere of Sign Gene directed and interpreted by Emilio Insolera, the talented Italian deaf director and producer, took place at Odeon Cinema in Milan on Friday 8th. As a lover of thrillers and sci-fi movie I can say grew up with various superheroes: Superman, Batman, X-Men and several others. But, a superheroe that happens to be deaf and that has superpowers based on his own potentials, particularly those linguistically visual was never created. With the film ‘Sign Gene’, Emilio Insolera launches the first generation of Deaf superheroes, mutants that have superpowers through the use of Sign Language. The film is an unique experiment with the right, direct and authentic perspective from a deaf person, was shot between Japan, USA and Italy, has a James Bond plot with a touch of X-men and Grindhouse vibes and makes several references to deaf culture and history and sign language linguistics. It will be screened in theatres on the 14th of September in sign languages: American, Japanese and Italian. Insolera is also one of the authors of the first Italian Sign Language multimedia dictionary and decided of course to add subtitles to let anyone follow the story, a bit intricated I would say but very fascinating. The sounds create an unexpected important part, sometimes overwhelming who is watching. All happens very fast and astonishes you with a vibrant energy.
The protagonist, performed by Emilio Insolera, is a secret agent, Tom Clerc, deaf, that comes from a multi-generational Deaf family and is descendant of Laurent Clerc ‘the Father of the Deaf in America’ that brought the sign language to the States two centuries ago. Tom is carrier of SGx29 a powerful Sign Gene mutation but he lost a significant portion of his powers during a fierce fight some years back against his main villain, his own deaf brother Jux Clerc the leader of 18.104.22.168. an evil organization dedicated to exterminating Sign Gene mutants. The 22.214.171.124. (International Genetic Genealogy Organization) is based in Milan, Italy and is run by Jux Clerc and refers to the Milan Conference in 1880 where educators declared that ‘sound’ languages were superior to ‘visual’ languages and passed a resolution banning the use of sign language in schools. Hugh Denison, the head of the Q.I.A. (QuinPar Intelligence Agency), an agency affiliated to The Pentagon composed of hand-selected agents with Sign Gene mutation, sends Tom Clerc and his colleague Ken Wong from New York City to Osaka to investigate various intriguing crimes scene. They end up in a fight with a Japanese gang led by Tatsumi Fuwa and learn that they can win the game only by playing it the Japanese way. Tom Clerc also learns that his powers are not lost forever, in the meantime falls in love with Kate Massieu a descendent of the deaf education’s pioneer Jean Massieu and gives birth to a child that will have the same powers of his father Tom for this will be in danger.
Go to cinemas to find out what happens and stay tuned for discovering more about Emilio in the following days.