Brother-Sister Team Give Voice To The Forgotten Through a Documentary About Sierra Leone, Pride Of Lions

Share Article

Pride of Lions (, a documentary film, presents Sierra Leone in a new light – the story of what it means for a country and its people who have been brutalized by an 11-year civil war to move beyond their scars. "Magnificent, inspiring, and a brilliantly woven narrative," wrote Bob Anderson, CBS 60-Minutes. "I believe the film Pride of Lions can help my people,” wrote Sorious Samura, Emmy Award-Winning journalist and filmmaker, Cry Freetown Los Angeles premier at the Pan African Film Festival.

Past News Releases


Pride of Lions (, a new feature documentary, (84-minutes) will be featured in the Pan African Film Festival 2010. The film presents Sierra Leone in a new light – the story of what it means for a country and its people who have been brutalized by an 11-year civil war to move beyond their scars.

John and Louise Woehrle, a brother and sister from Minneapolis, never intended to make a documentary film together until John had a life-changing experience after traveling to Sierra Leone in 2004. He was an acting teacher and screenwriter living in Los Angeles, asked by his acting student to accompany her to Sierra Leone to meet her biological father for the first time. John had no idea how this trip would alter his life. After meeting the capable, intelligent and gracious people from the village of Bumpe in Sierra Leone and witnessing firsthand the unthinkable suffering caused by war, he made a commitment to help.

Sharing stories of this community of amputees with his sister Louise, an award-winning filmmaker from the Twin Cities who specializes in telling stories of the human spirit, sparked a project that fueled hope and healing for all who participated. "In life sometimes we are not looking for healing and it comes unexpectedly, almost randomly," said Pride of Lions co-director and producer Louise Woehrle. “John brought me a great gift the day he asked me to partner with him to tell this important story. We have been a part of something really special. The film is serving a greater good here and in Sierra Leone, and it would not be happening if everyone involved had not been touched by the Sierra Leonean people.”

The brother/sister duo, have spent 4 1/2 years shepherding this film into reality. “I was inspired by the people I met in Sierra Leone,” said Pride of Lions co-director and executive producer John Woehrle, “so much so, that it completely changed the course of my life.” He is now focusing his energy working hard to rebuild in Sierra Leone through Global Action Foundation (GAF) and its partners in Sierra Leone. The documentary features the founders of GAF, Drs. Barrie and Dan Kelly, two humanitarians dedicated to tackling extreme poverty in war-disabled communities by providing affordable healthcare and sustainable businesses.

The Pride Of Lions film team includes award-winning cinematographer, Bill Carlson, sound/second camera, Jim Dreher, editor, Ben Watne, music supervisor Kent Militzer, and the post-production team at Splice Here.

Screenings: Pan African Film Festival 2010 Los Angeles - February 12 at 1:15p.m. and Tuesday February 16 at 1:45 p.m. at The Culver Plaza Theatres, 9919 Washington Boulevard, Los Angeles. (
Q and A follows screening.

Walker Art Center in Minneapolis 2010 Women With Vision Festival - March 20 at 3:00 p.m. at Walker Art Center, 1750 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, MN (
Q and A follows screening.

Film’s website: / Contact the filmmakers: 818-416-4354


Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

John Woehrle
Visit website