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Arab filmmakers say drawing on past gives new perspective to current realities

from Film-News.co.uk.

While several Arab filmmakers today draw on the past for inspiration, they say that the painful settings used as subject material is not about tapping into nostalgia but about interacting with the present and making new discoveries of the society they live in.

The filmmakers, addressing a panel discussion with the media at the fourth Doha Tribeca Film Festival (DTFF), the annual cultural event of Doha Film Institute (DFI), also shared a unified approach to filmmaking marked by painstaking research, a steadfast zeal to undertake their projects and a passion for cinema.

Directors Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige, whose documentary The Lebanese Rocket Society is screening in the Arab Film Competition at DTFF, undertook a 12-year-long research for the project about Lebanon launching the first rocket in the Middle East in the 1960s.

“The project was inspired by a postage stamp, and over the course of research we came across several people who were involved with the event,” said Joana. However, for the filmmakers, the challenge was to re-enact the settings for which they had to negotiate with the concerned authorities for over nine months. “There was no nostalgia. We were reenacting the events in the present,” added Khalil.

Read the rest of this article from Film-News.co.uk.

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