26 min, Documentary, Quebec, Canada, 2017
Directed byHébert, Catherine
Produced byCatherine Hébert, Elric Robichon
Short description

Filmed in Nyassan, Burkina Faso, this documentary observes with scrutiny the daily tasks of rice growing during the span of a day, and questions the future of the farmers.

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Film details

Nyassan, Sourou Valley, Burkina Faso. The night watchman awaits the dawn, marking the end of his night shift guarding the rice fields. At daybreak, the dryers light the fires, and the frothing cauldrons shroud the workers in billows of white steam. Shadows stretch over the road, toward the market, where tall heaps of rice wait for buyers. Ousseinata must find a customer if she is to have dinner tonight: a few handfuls of tô, eaten by moonlight. Yesterday in Nyassan is a patient observation of the actions that make up a day structured by rice farming. A day passes, slowly. Although it lacks an overt political stance, the film does convey the difficulty of living from local farming at a time when the market is drowning in cheap imports. What does the future hold for the farmers? What will tomorrow bring?


Script and Direction : Catherine Hébert
Direction of Photography : Elric Robichon

Editing : Elric Robichon

Sound Conception : Mélanie Gauthier

Sound Editing : Bruno Bélanger

Sound Recording : David Cherniak

Producer : Catherine Hébert et Elric Robichon

Production : Mango Films


Financial Partners



Hébert, Catherine

After earning a Bachelor’s degree in Communication at the Université du Québec à Montréal, Catherine Hébert entered the graduate program in international journalism offered jointly by Université Laval and the École supérieure de journalisme in Lille, France. She then did an apprenticeship at RTBF, the Belgian public broadcaster, and worked as a cooperant in Senegal. On returning to Montréal, she was hired as a researcher and assistant director for the documentary War Babies (2003), about children born of war rape. In 2002, she began directing news reports for Points Chauds, an international news program broadcast on Télé-Québec. Her first documentary, Tea at the Embassy (2003), describes the struggle of an 80-year-old activist and former prisoner of war in the Japanese concentration camps.

In spring 2004, she filmed a news report on one of today’s most under-reported conflicts, the war that rages in northern Uganda; Mangos for Charlotte was broadcast the following autumn on Télé-Québec. In 2005, she shoots her first lenght documentary, He’s the Man, a portrait of an heterogeneous company that plays the life of Jesus. Her documentary The Face I once Had (2005), looks at acid attacks on women in Bangladesh. It won Best News Report at the 2006 Gémeaux Award, honouring French-language achievement in Canadian television. Extremely moved by what she had witnessed in Uganda a few years back, she returned to this country to shot the documentary The Other Side of the Country (2008).




  • Yesterday in Nyassan (24 min / 2016)
  • René Derouin (4 x 5 min / 2013)
  • On a Road Less Taken (94 min / 2012)
  • The Other Side of the Country (84 min / 2008)
  • He’s the Man (89 min / 2005)
  • La longue route de Julienne (23 min / 2008)
  • Le microcrédit en question (23 min / 2008)
  • Le visage que j’avais (26 min / 2006)
  • Mangos for Charlotte (23 min / 2004)
  • Tea at the Embassy (47 min / 2003)