Private Project

The Man I Left Behind

The Man I Left Behind offers a unique perspective on the loss of territories. From the harrowing to the meditative, the film brings to light an unprecedented immersion into Magnum’s photographer Larry Towell’s forty-year quest for the indecisive moments. Towell made a lifelong commitment to expose the ties that bind people to their land, and this overriding concern ultimately forced him to look at his own land differently. Making use of his unprecedented archive of never-before-seen videos and photography, but also his field recordings, music compositions and poetry, this ontological film explores the invisible and underlying connections that bind us all together.

  • Larry Towell
  • Matthieu Rytz
    Anote's Ark (Sundance 2018) / Deep Rising (Sundance 2023)
  • Hubert Hayaud
  • Larry Towell
  • Matthieu Rytz
    Anote's Ark (Sundance 2018) / Deep Rising (Sundance 2023)
  • Hubert Hayaud
  • Matthieu Rytz
    Anote's Ark (Sundance 2018) / Deep Rising (Sundance 2023)
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 27 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    June 1, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    350 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
    Afghanistan, Canada, El Salvador, Mexico, Palestine, State of, Ukraine, United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Larry Towell, Matthieu Rytz, Hubert Hayaud

Larry Towell is Canada’s most decorated photojournalist and is the country’s first photographer to be made a member of Magnum, the world’s most prestigious photo agency that was founded by Henry Cartier- Bresson and Robert Capa in 1947.

Larry served as Vice-President of Magnum’s New York office for several years between 2007 and 2016.

After completing a Visual Arts degree at York University, Toronto, he began photographing and writing in Calcutta. He then went on to complete book projects in Central America on the Nicaraguan Contra War and on the relatives of the disappeared in Guatemala.
In 1996, Towell completed a monograph based on ten years of reportage in the brutal civil war in El Salvador, followed by a major book on the Palestinians.

His fascination with landlessness also led him to the Mennonite migrant workers of Mexico, an eleven-year work he completed in 2000. After receiving the inaugural Henri Cartier-Bresson Award,

Larry finished a second critically acclaimed book on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict (No Man’s Land, 2005), followed by The World From My Front Porch (2008) and most recently, Afghanistan (2014).

Towell’s photo stories have been published in many international magazines including; LIFE, The New York Times Magazine, Esquire, Elle, Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, Geo, and Stern.

His international photo awards include: The Henri Cartier-Bresson Award (first recipient); several first place World Press awards including the 1994 Photo of the Year; a Hasselblad Award; The Alfred Eisenstadt Award; The Oskar Barnack Award; the first Roloff Beny Book prize, a Paul de Hueck and Norman Walford Career Achievement Award, the Prix Nadar of France, and a British Design and Art Direction (D&AD) Award .

Larry is also a gifted writer and musician and is known for his innovative live performances incorporating original music, video, poetry, and stills.

Towell has had numerous one person and group exhibitions around the globe and is represented in many international public and private collections.

His current projects include the war in Ukraine and Central American migrants crossing Mexico.

Larry lives in rural Ontario where he sharecrops a 75-acre farm.

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