Life imitates art: Rio dancer likely killed by police bullet recorded short film that mirrored his demise a year later

Scene from Made in Brazil short film
Scene from Made in Brazil short film

Note from BW of Brazil: As Rio residents and and Brazilians deal with the latest senseless murder of a black male, an eerily similar example of “life imitating art” made by the victim nearly year before his death is being discussed in newspapers and social media sites. Douglas Rafael da Silva Pereira, known as DG, who was a dancer on the popular Globo TV variety show Esquenta, was gunned down earlier this week in yet another Military Police (MPs) operation in a poor neighborhood. The nearly 7-minute film shows various aspects in the life of a favela resident in Rio de Janeiro; including the brutality of which one is treated by police if young, poor and black. See the report and the short film below. 

Douglas Rafael filmed his own death in 2013

Scene from 2013 short film "Made in Brazil"
Scene from 2013 short film “Made in Brazil”

Courtesy of Pragmatismo Político

The death of dancer Douglas Rafael da Silva Pereira, known as DG, was announced by the dancer himself in 2013, in yet another proof that life imitates art.

DG was the main character in a short film called Made In Brazil. Is available on YouTube and you can be seen at the end of this text.

Douglas plays himself. He leaves a game of beach football in Copacabana and wanders the vicinity of the Pavão-Pavãozinho favela slum.  He passes in front of a daycare center, speaks with residents, helps a woman carry shopping bags up the hill and receives a blessing from an evangelical pastor.

Until there is a shootout. He is approached by MPs that attack him and, in the end, execute him with a shot in the neck. The idea of Wanderson Chan, the director, was to tell a story about “our social problems in parallel with the euphoria of the World Cup.”

2013 short film, "Made in Brazil"
2013 short film, “Made in Brazil”

The reality turned out to give the unassuming film a transcendent character. The body of DG, you know, was discovered on the steps of that daycare. According to the IML, he had an “internal hemorrhage due to pulmonary laceration due to transfixing wound of the chest.” In other words a gunshot. The Secretary of Security of Rio, Beltrame, said he doesn’t rule out a “possible fault of MPs”.

Douglas’s mother, Maria de Fátima, believed that there was torture. “I stayed with my son’s body until 3:30 in the morning and saw that he has a dent in his skull, a cut in his eyebrow and a purple nose. I believe they killed him. I’m sure he was tortured by UPP (1) officers,” she said.

Chronicle of a Death Foretold by García Márquez, begins: “On the day they were going to kill him, Santiago Nasar got up at 5:30 am to wait for the boat in which the bishop came.” In the book, Santiago is accused of dishonoring Ângela Vicário. The whole village learns that the worst is to come, but Santiago goes on to meet his fate at the hands of Ângela’s twin brothers.

Maria de Fátima says that people recorded on video the attack on her son.  She asked them to have the courage to publicize the photos. Maybe the videos don’t exist, but it’s not necessary. Made In Brazil, made ​​a year before Douglas’s death explains a lot about his life and death.


Source: Pragmatismo Político


1. The Unidade de Polícia Pacificadora, Pacifying Police Unit or Police Pacification Unit), abbreviated UPP, is a law enforcement and social services program pioneered in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, which aims at reclaiming territories, more commonly favelas, controlled by gangs of drug dealers. The program was created and implemented by State Public Security Secretary José Mariano Beltrame, with the backing of Rio Governor Sérgio Cabral. The stated goal of Rio’s government is to install 40 UPPs by 2014. Source: Wiki

About Marques Travae 3747 Articles
Marques Travae. For more on the creator and editor of BLACK WOMEN OF BRAZIL, see the interview here.

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