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This is film based on a true story.  It is disturbing portrayal of a secret world that is all around us.
Ai Qin, a young Chinese girl from Fujian borrows $25,000 to pay the Snakehead gang to smuggle her into the UK so she can support her son and family back in China. Once in the UK she becomes another one of three million migrant workers that are the bedrock of its food supply chain, construction and hospitality industries. She lives with 15 other Chinese in a two-bedroom suburban house. With an illegally forged work permit, she works in factories preparing food for British supermarkets.  In their search for better paying jobs to repay their debts they end up cockling in Morecambe Bay at night. On 5 February 2004 23 Chinese drowned in Morecambe, their families in China are still paying off their debts.
Ai Qin and the other principal characters are played by Chinese former illegal immigrants who have drawn on their life experiences to give passionate and authentic performances. The director, Nick Broomfield, has stepped out of his documentarian role, to create a grippingly compelling film that will change your views on the entire migrant population and leave you wondering about slavery in the 21st century.


Type of film
Running Time
96 mins
Nick Broomfield
Charles Finch
Executive Producer
Charles Finch
Peter Christelis
Nick Broomfield, Jez Lewis
Director of Photography
Mark Wolfe
Malcolm Hirst, Danny Hambrook
Principal Cast
Ai Qin Lin, Zhan Yu, Zhe Wei, Man Qin Wei, Yong Aing Zhai


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Last updated 22nd October 2007

Production Company

Lafayette Films
P.O. Box 5048
Santa Monica
CA 90409


Bankside Films
Douglas House
4th Floor, 3 Richmond Buildings
London W1D 3HE

T +44 (0)20 7734 3566