The life story of Frederic Sinistra, K-1 (kickboxing) champion of the world and renowned Belgian nightclub bouncer.

Revisits his traumatic childhood and explains how he overcame his demons to become a world champion.

Frederic, passed away during the making of the documentary.

  • Fares Mikail Manners
  • Laura Fautré
    Key Cast
    "Fred's mother"
  • Davide VanLeuwen
    Key Cast
    "Fred's father"
  • Julian VanLeuwen
    Key Cast
    "Fred as a boy 8-10"
  • Alexandra VanLeuwen
    Key Cast
    "Father's mistress"
  • Giulian VanLeuwen
    Key Cast
    "Fred as a boy 5-6"
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Drama, True story
  • Runtime:
    1 hour
  • Completion Date:
    February 28, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    3,000 EUR
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Fares Mikail Manners

Fares Mikail Manners is a British filmmaker, born in Cambridge U.K, based in Brussels, Belgium. In his early 20’s Fares worked for 8 years as nightclub bouncer in some of Belgium’s most dangerous clubs, where he witnessed violence, stabbings and shootings and learnt a lot about human nature and life.
In 2018 at the age of 35 Fares, decided to go back to school and studied Film Production. He was awarded a bachelor’s degree with first class honor’s. His first short student film “Un Autre Monde” (“Behind the door” English title), was about Jess, a 20-year veteran bouncer in the Belgian nightclubs, with reenactments of actual events.
In 2020, Fares met Frederic Sinistra, former kickboxing champion and bouncer. For the first time, Fred trusted someone to tell his life story, SINISTRA (2022), is Fares’s first full feature documentary.
Fares has up to now had to work as a one man band, mostly. In this way it gives his work a more personal touch, especially in regards to artistry and aesthetics.
His dream is to make films that people won’t forget.

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Director Statement

Fred passed away very suddenly during the last days of shooting, which means, that it is even more important that his story be told and shown around the world. It holds many crucial messages, especially when it comes to protecting children and making sure they grow up in safe environments. Before he died, he wanted people to know what had happened to him growing up in Sicily. It is the first time ever, he told anyone his story.

Initially, the plan was to make a 10 minute portrait, however, once we got started, it became quite clear that it wasn’t going to be enough.
And as a result, I ended up making my very first "long métrage". One of the biggest challenges I've ever had in my life. And Just to make it a little more challenging, I also had to navigate through covid lockdowns and restrictions. My team also not being available, I ended up doing almost everything by myself.
It took me just over a year to complete the film.