• A shepherd-student in a harshly divided region of China forms an integrated baseball team.

    A shepherd-student in a harshly divided region of China forms an integrated baseball team.

    http://cdn.itvs.org/diamond_in_the_dunes-promo.jpgmp4:diamond_in_the_dunes-promo-1024.mov
  • Ethnic tensions on a Chinese baseball team surface between Han-majority and Uighur-minority players.

    Ethnic tensions on a Chinese baseball team surface between Han-majority and Uighur-minority players.

    http://cdn.itvs.org/diamond_in_the_dunes-extra.jpgmp4:diamond_in_the_dunes-extra-1024.mov
  • Xinjiang University baseball captain Parhat Ablat

    Xinjiang University baseball captain Parhat Ablat

    http://cdn.itvs.org/diamond_in_the_dunes-01.jpg
  • Xinjiang University baseball captain Parhat Ablat

    Xinjiang University baseball captain Parhat Ablat

    http://cdn.itvs.org/diamond_in_the_dunes-02.jpg
  • Diamond in the Dunes Producers Chris Rufo and Keith Ochwat

    Diamond in the Dunes Producers Chris Rufo and Keith Ochwat

    http://cdn.itvs.org/diamond_in_the_dunes-03.jpg

The Film

Diamond in the Dunes is the true story of hope and baseball in China’s Xinjiang Province — a region harshly divided between an indigenous Muslim minority and the ruling Han Chinese.

The film follows Parhat Ablat, a 20-year-old Uyghur shepherd, as he attends the region’s racially segregated Xinjiang University and forms an integrated baseball team.

Parhat is on a fraught quest to raise his people out of what he calls their “spirit sickness.” While at the helm of Xinjiang University's first mixed-race team, he also starts a baseball program at a minority elementary school. For Parhat, baseball is more than a game; it’s a vehicle for spiritual transformation.

Finally, after a year of practice in the shadow of tense ethnic relations, Parhat and the university team travel 2,000 miles for their only game of the season — against a team of Tibetans on the Qinghai Plateau.

The Filmmaker

  1. Christopher RufoDirector