Join us on conservation expeditions
- Striped marlin expeditions in Mexico’s Baja California peninsula
About the documentary
For the last five years, Nakawe Project has travelled the world filming a full feature documentary called Game Over Fishing.
The film aims to present the issue of overfishing from a fresh and controversial angle that hasn’t been exposed to the general public before, questioning everything from government actions to the authorities that are supposedly monitoring the state of the oceans, revealing the scandals behind this huge industry.
Game Over Fishing follows the story of Regina Domingo, a young woman from Barcelona, who sails to a distant island to fight poaching of endangered sharks when her efforts get intercepted by government corruption. In an attempt to expose the conspiracies within the fishing industry, she documents her journey across oceans and cultures as she discovers why the control of our oceans was kept secret until now.
The film spotlights those who are wrongly portrayed as the cause of overfishing, such as members of coastal communities and artisanal fishers who have come to play a pivotal role as facilitators of change and awareness.
It gives voices to those who have never been given the opportunity to speak up, putting the audience into their shoes for the first time.
Filmed in many locations across the world, including Costa Rica, Mexico, Galapagos, Panama, Cuba and Cape Verde, the documentary provides a unique look at conservation issues. Bringing together some of the world’s top scientists such as Dr. Sylvia Earle and Dr. Enric Sala (National Geographic), activists Randall Arauz and Oriana Kalama, world-renowned cinematographers like Manu San Felix and Erick Higuera, we were able to present an up to date depiction of the oceans’ current state and focus on the topics that are usually avoided due to political complexity making Game Over Fishing an eye opener.
It’s hard to grasp the prospect of seas so compromised that they’re no longer able to sustain life, and, perhaps, our very existence. What will the future look like? We don’t yet know with certainty, but what we do know is that failure to acknowledge and deal with these problems is no longer an option. And so, The film concludes with a message of hope and specifies what actions any viewer can take to help. We hope the film will serve as a vehicle for change, raising awareness in both local and international communities.
Along our journey we met and worked with many extraordinary people: scholars, artists, conservationists, fishermen, scientists and more. The list below, while not exhaustive, includes some of the people we worked with.
- Debra Abercrombie (Shark researcher)
- Randal Arauz (Activist & marine biologist. Founder at Pretoma)
- Maximilliano Bello (Conservationist, specializes in international policy, Senior Officer at Pew Charitable Trust)
- ‘’Chino’’ (Artesanal fisherman)
- Regina Domingo (Activist, researcher and filmmaker. Founder at Nakawe Project)
- Dr. Sylvia Alice Earle (Renowned marine biologist. Founder at Mission Blue)
- Maike Heidemeyer (Activist & Marine Biologist)
- Sebastian Hernandez (Professor for Marine Biology at Veritas University, Costa Rica)
- Eric Higuera (Biologist & UW Cinematographer)
- Nicholas Johnson (Former at Costa Rica’s CITES administrative arm)
- Oriana Kalama (Activist. Founder at Ocean Defender Hawaii)
- Roy Kimhi (Submersible Pilot & Filmmaker)
- Avi Klapfer (Underwater Photographer. Founder at Undersea Hunter group)
- José Mora (Former longline fisherman)
- Dr. Enric Sala (Renowned explorer, Founder at National Geographic Pristine Seas Project)
- Manu San Felix (Renowned National Geographic UW cinematographer)
- Leandro Serra (President at ‘Fish Wholesalers’, Guild of Mercabarna, Spain)
- Chris Wade (Captain and activist at Sharkboat)
Release a shark!
Every shark fishing season, we work with a local community that relies on the shark-fishing season to support themselves and their families. We have worked very hard to foster relationships with this community and to earn the trust of these fishermen over time.
In the past, when we have enough funds and are able to do so, we have provided fishermen with financial incentive to release individual sharks that are critical to the health of their populations (ex: immature sharks who haven't yet had the chance to breed or pregnant sharks). In these situations, we have the opportunity to release a limited number of sharks caught, by matching the ‘cost’ of that shark - in other words, we compensate the fisherman for releasing the shark with the money he would've received for killing and selling that shark. We want to make the goal behind these interventions in the fishing community clear: While we cannot to do this for all caught sharks, we occasionally can intervene in this way, that is mutually beneficial to all involved. The shark population can hold on to these important individuals in order to help them persist and the fishermen can still support his family.
Your donation will go directly to this process- meaning that a pregnant, juvenile, or small shark will be released alive and unharmed when caught. Not only will the shark be released, but you will also receive a personalized photo / video of that very shark being cut loose and returning back into the ocean! We want to send you the actual results of your help/donation swimming back into the ocean!
Talk about a once in a lifetime opportunity!
Donate to Nakawe
Even if the crowdfunding has ended, you can still get involved by donating to Nakawe Project. Any amount is a great help for the project! We use PayPal as a payment gateway, in order to make everything safe and reliable.
Join our crowdfunding Ended
Our crowdfunding has ended with 40,030$ raised, thanks to all our backers for the support!
Browse our shop
We are pleased to announce the launch of our official Nakawe shop !
Visit the Nakawe shop here. 100% of your purchase will support the Nakawe Project campaigns
Call for footage
Shark meat is sold in supermarkets under false names. This means that you, the consumer, aren’t able to make informed decisions about what you’re buying. Even big corporations like Walmart mislabel their products.
- Cazón salado
- Rock salmon
- Pescado blanco
- Pan de cazón
- Cape steak
- Hues Moki
... all of these are names under which endangered species of sharks can be sold. We will feature some of your videos in our documentary. Any video received will greatly contribute to our investigation.
Sign the petition
Ask corporations to stop selling threatened species and label shark meat, sign the petition here!
Goals and objectives
We want our documentary to work towards:
- Significantly reducing the consumption of shark meat and its byproducts in Central American countries where it is consumed in abundance.
- Encouraging government and their agencies to develop educational programs that offer alternative livelihoods to coastal communities - these programs should focus on teaching fishermen new skills that can be applied in a variety of roles.
- Amending, ratifying and implementing laws that will help global shark and ray populations recover
Fishing communities can only become strong and enjoy increased prosperity if sustainable fishing takes hold. This is a necessary change to aid fishing communities during this transitional period. We want our documentary to bridge the gap between conservation, poverty and sustainability.
Closing the loop
Unsustainable fishing practices over the past several decades have driven many species to the edge of extinction.
These necklaces are handcrafted by park ranger Moises Gomez from Cocos Island, Costa Rica. They feature a circular fishing hook on a black rope with a stainless steel clasp and have come to symbolize our documentary as we fight to close the loop on unsustainable fishing practises. We hope these necklaces will help to start small conversations that will swell into large discussions about the value of our oceans and the urgency of change.
These necklaces are only available via our crowdfunding, and only in very limited numbers.
Our hook ambassadors
Closed Hook ambassadors are stewards of the ocean. They are conservationists, scientists, and filmmakers who have spent their lives carrying out acts that that aim to accomplish and promote exactly what the closed hook represents; the value of our oceans and our need to protect the creatures within them. We would like to take this opportunity to thank our Closed Hook ambassadors for their tireless efforts. We still have a chance to save the oceans because of people like them.
Sylvia EarleSylvia A. Earle is explorer-in-residence at the National Geographic Society, founder of the Sylvia Earle Alliance/Mission Blue, founder of Deep Ocean Exploration and Research Inc., chair of the advisory council for the Harte Research Institute, and former chief scientist of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). She has authored more than 200 publications and led more than 100 expeditions with over 7,000 hours underwater.
Peter HughesPeter Hughes is a diving pioneer — and has been for several decades. And he has literally done it all! From owning a resort to an equipment company to a fleet of liveaboards, his passion for the underwater world has never waivered. And he does whatever he can to ensure that world is protected for generations to come.
David castroHe is one of the young men living in the community that is helping to ensure proper enforcement within the Cabo Pulmo National Park. He is a divemaster at the Cabo Pulmo Divers shop and is one of the young activists working tirelessly to protect Cabo Pulmo. With his family and friends David is trying to preserve the marine life and show the rest of the world that marine reserves can be a good model for sustainable coastal development
Erick Ross SalazarDr. Erick Ross Salazar marine biologist, science Manager at Fundación MarViva, diver and some of the most passionate conservationists in Costa Rica.
Nicolas NeidhardtNicolas Neidhardt is a French & German composer and producer based in Los Angeles, CA. He is known for his work for feature films, TV, commercials and video games. He is also known for his work as a songwriter and record producer. And the composer ofGame Over Fishing soundtrack.
Chris WadeCaptain Chris Wade is a Marine Explorer, Shark Expert, and Ocean Advocate, captain at Research Vessel Sea Watch.
Erick HigueraErick Higuera is a Mexican multi-awarded underwater filmmaker, photographer, marine biologist and conservationist.
Octavio ValdésOctavio Valdés is a shark Ambassador, freelance shark-feeder and a PADI Scuba Dive Instructor.
Alejandro LemusMexican freediving national champion in all the disciplines in the pool and in depth. He was given the books of Jacques Cousteau by his father as a child and his fascination with the underwater world continues to this day. He is a hydrobiologist and started out his diving life in scuba. However, when he discovered freediving 13 years ago he instantly realised his mission in life. He starts each day thinking of new projects to help grow the sport and the community that he loves.
Octavio AburtoDr. Aburto is a professional photographer associate with the International League of Conservation Photographers, a Kathryn Fuller Fellow and a National Geographic Explorer. His research and photographs on marine reserves, commercially exploited marine species and fisheries, have been part of several international conservation projects and contests.
JP GeoffroyJP Geoffroy is an avid conservationist with a deep desire to help the planet. Growing up near the Galapagos, JP fell in love with the ocean and all of Earth’s animals. His dedication to conservation has played a key role in the creation of this film. His passions have taken him into the world of Subaquatic Rescue Diving with the Chilean Firefighters, a Dive Instructor, a Media and Campaign Leader for Sea Shepard Conservation Society, a deck hand and a Computer Engineer. Currently, he serves as an ambassador and Vice President for Nakawe Project’s Mexico Division, and an Ambassador for OCEAN REEF INC, and DEEPBLU.
Alonso I. Rodriguez de la ParraCo-founder of @MaresdeMéxico and musician. Working on changing the world through the entretainment industry.
“We must play a different game to have a new outcome”
Filipe DeAndradeCinematographer Nat Geo WILD's wildlife photographer. Brazilian born, adventure-addicted, and a passion for all things wild, Filipe jumped into uncertainty by solo-trekking the entire Appalachian Trail in 2012 after graduating from the University of Florida. Since then, he’s become an Emmy wining Photographer, Director of Photography and Producer in NYC. Most recently Filipe was nominated for 19 NY EMMYs and won a contract with NatGeo WILD that sent him to Africa for 4 months.
Valentina KochianValentina Kochian is a marine biology student that became one of the youngest freediving instructors in the world, crating her school Freefall Academy in Mexico. She believes changes start from within, so she wants to separate the dualism between science and society to have conscious and well informed citizens that take care and action to protect the Oceans and coexist peacefully with all living creatures.
Ella GraceElla has a deep love for the ocean, and all the marine life in it. She is fiercely passionate about protecting what she loves, and actively speaks out against single use plastics, marine pollution and the need for better protection for sharks. Ella's goal is to educate as many people as she can about the vital role of sharks, and what the destruction of their populations means for the entire ecosystem and life on land. She understands that the time is now to inspire people to care, love and respect nature, so that our future generations are able to see the beauty of the ocean and all it's wonderful life.
Amos NachoumInternationally awarded marine and wildlife photographer & explorer; leader of National Geographic expedition teams which have included Dr. Eugenie Clark, Dr. Sylvia Earle, and Buzz Aldrin; co-producer of tv documentaries with Stan Waterman. Amos specializes in Big Animals photography in the wild producing images & stories for magazines, TV, Hollywood. Leading expeditions from the North Pole to Antarctica, Amos believes that through observation and interaction people will both understand and learn to respect our fragile environment and protect the most imposing inhabitants in our universe
Jim AbernethyJim Abernethy is an award-winning author, photographer, cinematographer and conservationist who pioneered shark encounters without a cage. Abernethy hosts cage-free dive expeditions (day/night) with tiger, great hammerheads, oceanic white tips, bull, and lemon sharks – he is best known as an extremely passionate crusader for their protection and has received numerous awards for his lifelong dedication as a marine life conservationist.
Jeremiah SullivanMarine Biologist Jeremiah Sullivan developed a flexible suit of armor for divers to wear while working around sharks. Founder of Neptunic and SharkArmor Tech Often referred to as: Metal Mesh Shark Suit, Chain Mail Anti-Shark Suit, neptunic sharksuit (His former company name), Steel Mesh Shark Suit, etc. Jeremiah specializes in human shark interactions and manufactures advanced protective gear for professional, commercial, military and qualified sport divers who must work or dive in hazardous conditions
QueenyQueeny - model - always had a deep passion and love for the oceans and all animals. At first she was quite fearful of the ocean but now she has conquered many fears of the ocean by diving. Now she is a rescue diver, freediver and underwater photographer. She is an advocate for the ocean and all beings within.
Meet the team
Roy KimhiProducer, Cinematographer, Co-Director.
Originally from Israel, Dive instructor and underwater photographer, Roy Kimhi is all about the ocean. Traveling around the world at the age of twenty-one, Roy has been diving and filming in some of the most exotic places on the planet. Two years after, he moved to Costa Rica and started working for 'Undersea Hunter Group', a dive company with one of the only submersible vehicles in the world. Being a pilot of this submarine, filming and meeting people from all around the world, Roy started working on this film when he realized something must change about how we treat the ocean. During this time he has filmed and edited many small projects, including some shot using Virtual Reality technology. Recently, he directed a short VR film about the experience of being in the water with great white sharks under the name “The Great” which was officially selected for the Sanctuary Cove International Film Festival 2017 and has won the “VR Outstanding Achievement Award” at the Calcutta International Cult Film Festival 2017.
Zeév GirshDirector & Editor.
Born and raised in Israel, Ze’ev always had a passion for documentary films and therefore he taught himself video editing at the age of fifteen. Excelling in Film Orientation, he later worked as a freelancer videographer for years. Ze’ev is also s a scuba diver since a young age, he fell in love with the Red Sea and the life within it. Working as a dive instructor for several years he was exposed to the massive impact humans have on the oceans, which inspired him to start working on this project.
Regina DomingoProducer, Cinematographer, Researcher.
Founder and executive director of Nakawe Project, a non-profit organization that focuses its efforts on the protection of marine life. Growing up by the Mediterranean Sea next to Barcelona, Regi has worked in and around the ocean for all of her life. Currently, she directs an ecoturism platform to explore the open ocean both in freediving and snorkeling in Los Cabos, BCS, Mexico, called Pelagic Safari. With massive persistence and courage she manages to gain access to places no one else has, rendering her an unmatched researcher for this project. Working with government authorities, organizations and different creative teams, she is also a key producer in the film, always obtaining the the necessary information and footage.