This year, when we will talk about urban falcons at the Delta Birding Festival, we won’t miss the opportunity to talk about urban hawks in New York too. The Legend of Pale Male is a documentary of a Belgian young man, Frederic Lilien, who arrives, disoriented, in New York in 1993 with the intention to find a meaning to his life. In that moment, a Red-tailed Hawk gets established in a building near Central Parc, an almost white bird, whom New Yorkers name Pale Male. Llien decides to make a documentary of the bird, that spans over 15 years.
The result is in fact a love story among the inhabitants of the city and the hawk, who finally becomes a symbol of the fight for survival in the concrete jungle, apart from a tourist attraction and a place of pilgrimage. A crowd of birders, movie stars, poets, children and late night show presenters follow the life of Pale Male minute by minute. A life that is not free from handicaps, good news and dangers that trigger very emotional reactions among hawk lovers. This is story made in New York that surprises and moves as few can do.