Kitab (Xavi Herrero) Spain

Xavi Herrero
Spain. 2021. 85 min

Ouadane and Chinguetti have the oldest and most valuable libraries in Mauritania and the Arab world, of incalculable heritage and cultural value. Some of its books, older than the Koran itself, may contain secrets linking Atlantis to the Richat structure near Ouadane.

Baba and Yoshef are two hustlers from Nouakchott who are commissioned to get wooden manuscripts that provide information about Atlantis to locate archaeological remains in the Richat. The librarians feel offended at the mere possibility of trying to buy their cultural heritage inherited from generation to generation and decide to write a collective manifesto to avoid these situations in the future.

At the same time, Zaida, an expert local guide in the area, hired by foreign expeditions in search of archaeological remains and a former Théodore Monod expeditionary, bring us closer to the mysterious structure of the Richat, for many, the geological remains of Atlantis.


Xavi Herrero literally grows up in a photo studio. Catalan filmmaker and producer residing in Ibiza since 2014, the year he abandoned his professional activity in Barcelona which was focused on TV-3 and other production companies such as El Terrat or Dorna among many others. In 2016 he created Ibizacinefest, the Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente de Ibiza, that he continues to direct nowadays, preparing the 5th edition. At the same time, he is producing and directing 4 feature films related to the island of Ibiza. Moonface. Una mujer en la guerra was awarded at the Festival de Màlaga 2019 with a Silver Bizanga and the Audience Award. With his fifth feature film Salka en la tierra de nadie he begins a new stage focused on 2 collaborative productions in Mauritania. He has currently finished “Kitab“. His feature films have been awarded and selected in Festivals such as Festival de Málaga, Cinespaña, Docs Barcelona, Atlantida Film Fest, Vladivostok, etc … and in industry sections such as EFM Berlinale, Visions du Réel Industry, Medimed or Spanish Screenings. Since May 2022 is member of European FIlm Acadmy whit the right to vote of European FIlm Awards.


Kitab is my second feature film made in Mauritania after “Salka in no man’s land”, both collaborative with the Project Hummingbird from A pencil a drawing that manages the NAD orphanage in Nouabhidou. The NAD is led by Aichetou Dyallo and she herself is in charge of the pre-production of these films in this hermetic country as unknown.
The conditions of the filming, derived from those of the country, they are completely minimalist and complicated.
Each shooting and lodging in the NAD, become experiences unforgettable moments in this attempt to document Mauritania with author documentaries, in the case of “Kitab” approaching the libraries of the desert, guided by the main musicians of the Atar region and discovering the possibility that the structure of the Richat is Plato’s Atlantis.