Hidden Heart

Directed by Cristina Karrer & Werner Schweizer
Produced by Werner Schweizer & Carl-Ludwig Rettinger & Steven Markovitz
97 min
Switzerland, Germany, South Africa



Christian Barnard from Cape Town didn’t write the great success-story of the first heart transplantation in 1967 alone. Hamilton Naki, a black man, was equally part of the sensational operation. Hidden Heart tells the story of two men, glamour, injustice and uprising.
The story of the two men not only recounts the heart transplant in a new light but also shows how determination and discipline, characteristics possessed by both men, can move mountains. The mountain moved by Barnard went down in history books but this does not make Naki’s achievements any less, when recounted in the political context of the time. Hidden Heart knows no taboos, neither in its treatment of Naki nor of Barnard. The two are to be examined criticalx`ly yet fairly through a multifaceted kaleidoscope of testimonials from carefully chosen witnesses from the period.


Solothurner Filmtage, 2008

Film Festival, Time To Live, Saint-Petersburg, Switzerland 2008

Sevilla Festival de Cine Europeo, Competition, Spain,2008

Kasseler Dokumentarfilm, Germany, 2008

Fajir International Film Festival Teheran, Iran, 2009

Cinema Verité, Iran, 2009ImagéSanté Liège, Belgium, 2010


Zurich Film Award, Switzerland, 2008

Nomination Prix du Public, Solothumer Filmtage, Locarno Film Fesitval, Germany2008


Currently not for distribution in South Africa