Two days of bi-national filmaking

Two days of bi-national filmaking
May 9, 2012 sadaka reut

The camera as a tool for activism – Two days of bi-national filmmaking

Training workshop of “Community in Action” participants

Sadaka’s young activist group Community in Action made an early start on Friday, April 27th, heading north to the mixed city of Akka. There an intensive seminar took place in which the group envisaged, planned, filmed, edited and created two one-minute movies – all in two days. The movies touched the struggle in old Akka, resisting the evacuation of Palestinian families from their houses in favor of new boutique hotels.

The background for the situation in the city and the on-goings of the struggle were exposed to the group by the Akka-based activist Johayna Seify. The eye-opening tour was often stopped by the group who made sure they heard Johayna’s words correctly, describing the absurd reality of evacuation and oppression. They found out that indeed they heard right, it is the racist policies and municipal acts that are unbelievable.

A concentrated filmmaking workshop commenced right after the tour. The workshop was conducted by the Palestinian filmmaker Anan Barikat from Nazarreth. The group, divided into two production teams, decided about an initial idea and developed it into a shooting-plan. The next day and noon where spent by roaming the streets of old Akka, directing, filming, acting, waiting for the light to change and arguing about both cinema and politics in loud voices, merging suitably with the voices from the market place and the marine.

After the shooting material was gathered, the group returned to the hostel in order to edit it into a film. At the same day an official YouTube channel of the group was inaugurated in the name SadakaFAC, where everybody can watch the films.

Mahmud, a Palestinian participant, honestly described his feelings before the seminar and how they changed: “I came to the seminar very skeptical at first, I didn’t understand what exactly are we supposed to do. After a talk with Anan, the cinema guide, I immediately thought of something and filmed it with Anan’s help. Afterwards we showed the pictures, which were truly beautiful and inspiring”

Michal: “The seminar enabled us to meet through the joint creation, as human beings. For a moment I wasn’t an “Israeli Jew” (which I am a little bit tired of being) but just Michal. We managed to create a film together because we agree on many things; we recognize injustice and atrocities in the same places. This discovery was exiting, liberating and made me hopeful regarding joint action. The experience I went through with the group, was the magic of this seminar from me”

Sajida: a Palestinian participant added: “The seminar ended with a strong energy for each of us. It was a fun and interesting experience. We managed to phrase an idea and get it across clearly. We concluded that there is an importance and power in cooperation. The volunteers bonded and got closer to each other which made the work enjoyable and meaningful”.

This publication has been produced with the assistance of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of Sada-Reut and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union.