Palestinian Projects for Storydoc

Two of the four Palestinian projects selected for the Storydoc sessions in Corfu, Greece in July and in Athens in November are at a stage between production and postproduction. For these two film projects the Corfu session of Storydoc will be a perfect chance to achieve reactions from filmmakers, including editors, and broadcasters, before reaching the final cut stage. Nahed Awwad (PHOTO) showed us unique material from her 28 minutes long, scene divided disc. She presented what is to be an observational film entitled ”The Mail” that gives us both knowledge and emotion. Knowledge when it comes to the documentation of the transport of ID application papers in a cardboard box from the Palestinian authorities in the West Bank to Israeli authorities, that has its office in a settlement! Emotion, to mention just one scene, when a mother and her daughters watch a clip with the son/brother, who lives in Gaza and can not get a travel permit to see the family unless strong illness in the family is proved! Division, humiliation, what else would you call it – but here shown in a non-agressive manner with big effect. She dares the pauses in her filming, what a relief in a stressed film environment where the idea seems to be to get as much as possible out to the audience as quick as possible.

More aggressive is the story by Khaled Jarrar, simply because its subject is so strong in its visual documentation. Jarrar, a video artist and photographer, and a former 8 year long bodyguard of Arafat, has for years filmed Palestinians who have found their way into Jerusalem. They wander through sewers, they climb the Wall, or they smuggle bread under the wall to a seller waiting on the other side. There are many reasons to break the rules of the occupiers and Jarrar has caught them in what is going to be a character driven, creative documentary, so far with the working title, ”Sneaking”.

At an earlier stage is Wafa Jamil with her ”Coffee for All Nations” about a man who lives in a cave in a village near Bethlehem the whole year round serving visitors from all over, who come to him and his small place to show a sign and wish for peace. The man, however, has a wife and seven children at home, and the wife does not like his self-chosen mission. To put it with an understatement.

And totally at the research stage is Ahmed AlBakri with his proposal to film old Arab men who sit and do nothing or are still active as the three men, he has found and who he wants to film: a taxi driver, a man who wants a new keffiyehs and a farmer who is still, at the age of 74, ready to dance the night through!

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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