Sun Come Up follows the relocation of some of the world’s first “environmental refugees,” the Carteret Islanders – a community living on a remote island chain in the South Pacific Ocean.
When rising seas threaten their survival, the islanders face a painful decision: they must leave their beloved land in search of a new place to call home.
The film follows the Carteret’s relocation leader, Ursula Rakova, and a group of young islanders led by Nick Hakata as they search for land in Bougainville, an autonomous region of Papua New Guinea 50 miles across the open ocean.
The move will not be easy as Bougainville is recovering from a 10-year civil war. Many Bougainvilleans remain traumatized by the “Crisis” as the civil war is known locally. Yet, Sun Come Up isn’t a familiar third world narrative. Out of this tragedy comes a story of hope, strength, and profound generosity.
San Kamap (Sun Come Up) means sunrise in pidgin and reflects this sentiment – the resilience of the community, and the hope that’s present at the start of a new day.