WE ARE HAPPY TO ANNOUNCE THAT AFTER A VERY COMPETITIVE SELECTION PROCESS, 10 EXTRAORDINARY DOCUMENTARY PROJECTS WERE SELECTED FOR THE 2021-2022 CLOSE-UP PROGRAM!
We are excited to share the 10 powerful documentary projects representing a diverse group of filmmakers coming from different countries, ethnicities, and cultural background. This year’s cohort – of 24 directors and producers – hails from Afghanistan, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Palestine, Qatar, Syria, Sudan, Turkey, Yemen.
Boundless Stillness tells the story of a small Sri Lankan fishing village that skyrocketed to fame as an international kitesurfing hotspot, exposing the stories from the two coexisting worlds: kitesurfing and fishing. Dilsiri, a local kitesurfing entrepreneur, is trying to maintain a sustainable tourism model against the overcrowding of international investors. The head family of the fishing society is split between generations; a resistant-to-change grandfather, an accommodating father, and a rebellious kitesurfing son. With COVID halting mass-tourism in their village, our characters are forced into new journeys.
Early 1970s. The two giant, monument-like towers, erected on either side of the Bosphorus, watch over Istanbul and witness a changing Turkey. Bridge depicts the period between 1970-1973 when the construction of the first Bosphorus Bridge took place. The film is an attempt at a poetic retelling of history, creating a narrative of social, cultural and ecological history through objects.
Patriot Mr. Sharif Watan dost who wears a red hat which is a symbol of millennial Hazara culture. He is successful comedian who goes to war of poverty, Mafia and racism with empty hands, a lot of anger and force. He buries a bunch of young people who have been killed in schools, maternity wards, mosques and stadiums, all of which are Hazara people. But he is just watching this systematic massacre that has ancient roots, from the time of Abdul Rahman to the Ashraf Ghani. Despite, the fall of Ghani these systematic killings are continued till date.
Does a location define a character and goal? The documentary of Salima is a true-life event of a female Governor who used to live and work in the most male ruled country on earth. A woman who has worked for the past three years as the district governor in Blakh Province in Afghanistan to teach men how to be a man. Her unbreakable character and strength was a true challenge to Taliban, until the country was taken by the Taliban. She fled to USA, facing a whole new challenge. A new game; how to help a country from distance. Will the motivations as immigrant increase or the opposite happens? We will find out by following her closely.
My grandfather was a military governor of the Arab citizens of Israel after the establishment of the state. The positive image he presented during his lifetime slowly crumbles when I reveal his true actions as ruler.
“It’s hard being a teenager and probably even more so when you have to live with your enemy…”
Unexpectedly, in the heart of Israel burning with war, in complete secrecy, there is an extraordinary boarding school, home for Palestinians, Israelis and international teenagers. As they begin their senior year, Success and failures, Friendship and rivalries, Love and heartbreak occupy their world. At this delicate point, political tension infiltrates their safe cocoon, suddenly they realize that more than just being adolescents, they are “forced” to represent their nationalities. Will their friendships survive pervasive national conflict? Do they have the ability to change their ways and chart a different future for all of us?
The film tells the story of a man from Rojava (Northern Syria) who has lost his olive trees during the war and he is trying to rebuild his lost trees and life in his mind and in the real world.
Nasser is a 16-year-old child soldier who is actively trying to find his place in the community in a small village in Yemen. The unfortunate circumstances in the country led him to grow up too soon, and he is in a constant struggle to keep being his family’s primary provider.
Two young girls navigate their lives within a terror-infested and broken society. Life In The Shadows, provides a rare picture of how an ongoing genocide is affecting the life of a small Hazara community in Quetta, a border city of Pakistan.
Machid and Khatima are soon to leave their childhood and enter into adulthood. Machid dreams of a wider world and of joining her father in the west only if she survives targeted attacks on her community. Khatima contents herself with the here and now and together with a gang of child labors, she works and lives in a massive cemetery. Their neighborhood in Quetta is surrounded by walls and army checkpoints to keep the Taliban out. Neither Machid nor Khatima have ever passed through the walls.
In this project through archives, documentations and historians accounts we will tell the story of first ever persian radio founded in 1939 in Berlin and the team of Germans and Iranians behind it. A Nazi Radio station that influenced significants sections of Iranians through Hitler’s favorite medium. For six years Radio Berlin spread propaganda and anti-semitism in the homes and tee-houses all over the country. What was their main intention? How did it influence Iran’s future? And how did they shape the lives of minorities in Iran at the time? What is its legacy for today’s Iranian society?