الشهر: فبراير 2012

فبراير 2, 2012

Thankful For Cinema: See Tarzan and Arab’s Journey To Austin

Tarzen and Arab are twin filmmakers from Gaza who had never seen a movie in a theater. The Drafthouse smuggled them to Austin to see their first projected film – as well as their own film on a big screen in front of an audience.    Weeks ago I told you the story of Tarzan and Arab, the filmmaking brothers who escaped Gaza to come to Texas. Their goal: to see a movie on the big screen for the first time. After lots of uncertainty and a little bit of danger, they came to Austin and entered the Alamo Ritz on 6th Street, where their short Colourful Journey played before a screening of their favorite film, Cries and Whispers.
While they were in Texas Tim League and the rest of the team from the Alamo Drafthouse showed them the best the state had to offer, including the Austin Studios, I Love Video and more. Their visit was documented, and this short featurette lets you meet Tarzan and Arab and see what their experience was like.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and most of us will be doing

the big family dinner thing. As you're remembering what you're thankful for, take a moment to give a nod to cinema. Not just escapism and entertainment, at its best cinema is like emotional telepathy, allowing filmmakers to beam ideas and feelings straight into you through the power of the big screen. And while you're at it, be thankful for repertory theaters; the experience of seeing a great movie on a big screen with a warm audience is one of the best things the modern world can offer us, and it's something many of us take for granted.
Tarzan and Arab's journey is not over! They are working on a feature film, and there's a Kickstarter dedicated to helping them fund it. Check it out right here. badassdigest.com/2011/10/21/escape-from-gaza-how-palestinian-filmmakers-tarzan-and-arab-made-it-to-aust/

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فبراير 2, 2012

Film comes from deep in the art from gaza Arab & Tarzan

Film comes from deep in the art of Gaza Twins, 24, ‘Go to the movies’ for the first time Updated: Wednesday, 26 Oct 2011, 7:02 PM CDT Published : Wednesday, 26 Oct 2011, 6:51 PM CDT
Jim Swift AUSTIN (KXAN) – Ahmed and Mohamed Abu Nasser , identical twins from the Palestinian territory of Gaza, are in Austin to get something: A chance to see their first theatrical movie. In exchange, they brought along something to give, as well: a screening of their own film for an Austin audience.
Speaking Arabic translated by interpreter Emilie Durand-Zuniga, Ahmed Abu Nasser told a story unimaginable to Americans.
“All the movie theaters in Gaza have been destroyed,” he said, “since 1987. There used to be eight, but they’re all destroyed.” It was in that year that the tiny piece of land, sandwiched between Israel, Egypt and the Mediterranean Ocean, was engulfed in violence during the so-called “First Intifada,” an uprising by the Gaza Palestinians against Israeli occupation. The theaters never returned.
“In those movie theaters that have been destroyed, everything's, everything's been destroyed,” said Ahmed’s brother, Mohamed Abu Nasser. “And even the smell, you can smell in them, is terrible; no one can stand it.”
But growing up in Gaza, the boys, now 24, did see films on TV and fell deeply in love with them. They dreamed of becoming actors and directors. Their father encouraged them and urged them to paint, as well.
Much of their material was inspired by what they saw when they would occasionally sneak into the abandoned Gaza movie houses.
Hanging on the walls, the children were dumbstruck by aging, crumbling posters that advertised motion pictures. In time, they began to produce their own posters , reflecting imaginary films that the brothers named after Israeli military operations. The subject matter was gruesome, but to keep from alienating their potential audience, the artists kept it at a distance.
“You will look at some of our posters and you will notice that although we're picturing something that's very violent, we don't find the violence that you would find in reality,” said Mohamed, who produces his art under the name, Arab. “We try to do it in an artistic way.”
As a result, Arab and Ahmed, known by his art name, Tarzan, are attracting quite a following, and not just in Gaza.
“People wrote about it even in the Hebrew newspapers, the Israeli newspapers,” said Tarzan, “so even the other side has accepted it.”
But the twins didn’t stop there. They cut corners, hit up friends, even bent the truth with authorities from Hamas, the Palestinian faction that controls Gaza, to make a short, but beautifully produced and award-winning film of their own.
Called, “ Colorful Journey ,” the film depicts an artist at work on a painting, a painting that conjures a war between brothers, just like the one that divides Hamas from Fatah, the other major Palestinian faction that controls the West Bank, on the other side of Israel. The “war” in the film takes place amid the destruction of a larger conflict, just like the one between the Palestinians and Israel.
In the movie, the artist loses control of his own painting and the divided brothers die at the hands of their occupiers.
The point, say the brothers, is to encourage the factions to unite in the face of a common enemy. But Tarzan and Arab insist that is not in order to defeat Israel, but to make peace with the Israelis from a place of strength.
“In our film, we didn't try to put the responsibility [for the factional division] on Israel,” Tarzan said. “We consider that the responsibility falls on the two brothers that are pictured in our film, that are killing each other. One is representing Hamas and the other, Fatah.
“I believe that if everyone forgot about the political problems for a little while and tried to create something for his society or her society,” brother Arab said, “then the entire world would be living in peace.
“All religions say this, whether it be Judaism, Islam, Christianity; they all send this message of peace. They're not for violence.”
The filmmakers, of course, are not naive; they live in a cauldron of hatred.
“Of course, you'll find groups that don't agree,” Tarzan acknowledged. “We can't say that everyone in Israel agrees and in Palestine, people don't agree. But at the end of the day, everyone wants peace; everyone wants to live and everyone wants to be safe.”
The brothers believe everyone wants something else, as well: to live in the midst of beauty.
“In spite of the situation with Israel and the Israeli military operations and in spite of the Palestinian division,” Tarzan testified, “Gaza is a very beautiful place. It's very beautiful and the people of Gaza are really good people. They are loving people; they are people who love others. It's a very nice place to be.”
“As an artist,” added Arab, ”it's true that I try to picture what we're going through and the sufferings of our people. But at the same time, you can't forget the beauty of the world, the beauty of what surrounds you.
“What we try to do is picture beauty, look for beauty. It doesn't matter which side you're on. Beauty is what matters; beauty is what's important.”
Tarzan and Film comes from deep in the art of Gaza Twins, 24, ‘Go to the movies’ for the first time Updated: Wednesday, 26 Oct 2011, 7:02 PM CDT Published : Wednesday, 26 Oct 2011, 6:51 PM CDT
Jim Swift AUSTIN (KXAN) – Ahmed and Mohamed Abu Nasser , identical twins from the Palestinian territory of Gaza, are in Austin to get something: A chance to see their first theatrical movie. In exchange, they brought along something to give, as well: a screening of their own film for an Austin audience. Speaking Arabic translated by interpreter Emilie Duran

d-Zuniga, Ahmed Abu Nasser told a story unimaginable to Americans. “All the movie theaters in Gaza have been destroyed,” he said, “since 1987. There used to be eight, but they’re all destroyed.” It was in that year that the tiny piece of land, sandwiched between Israel, Egypt and the Mediterranean Ocean, was engulfed in violence during the so-called “First Intifada,” an uprising by the Gaza Palestinians against Israeli occupation. The theaters never returned. “In those movie theaters that have been destroyed, everything's, everything's been destroyed,” said Ahmed’s brother, Mohamed Abu Nasser. “And even the smell, you can smell in them, is terrible; no one can stand it.” But growing up in Gaza, the boys, now 24, did see films on TV and fell deeply in love with them. They dreamed of becoming actors and directors. Their father encouraged them and urged them to paint, as well. Much of their material was inspired by what they saw when they would occasionally sneak into the abandoned Gaza movie houses. Hanging on the walls, the children were dumbstruck by aging, crumbling posters that advertised motion pictures. In time, they began to produce their own posters , reflecting imaginary films that the brothers named after Israeli military operations. The subject matter was gruesome, but to keep from alienating their potential audience, the artists kept it at a distance. “You will look at some of our posters and you will notice that although we're picturing something that's very violent, we don't find the violence that you would find in reality,” said Mohamed, who produces his art under the name, Arab. “We try to do it in an artistic way.” As a result, Arab and Ahmed, known by his art name, Tarzan, are attracting quite a following, and not just in Gaza. “People wrote about it even in the Hebrew newspapers, the Israeli newspapers,” said Tarzan, “so even the other side has accepted it.” But the twins didn’t stop there. They cut corners, hit up friends, even bent the truth with authorities from Hamas, the Palestinian faction that controls Gaza, to make a short, but beautifully produced and award-winning film of their own. Called, “ Colorful Journey ,” the film depicts an artist at work on a painting, a painting that conjures a war between brothers, just like the one that divides Hamas from Fatah, the other major Palestinian faction that controls the West Bank, on the other side of Israel. The “war” in the film takes place amid the destruction of a larger conflict, just like the one between the Palestinians and Israel. In the movie, the artist loses control of his own painting and the divided brothers die at the hands of their occupiers. The point, say the brothers, is to encourage the factions to unite in the face of a common enemy. But Tarzan and Arab insist that is not in order to defeat Israel, but to make peace with the Israelis from a place of strength.
“In our film, we didn't try to put the responsibility [for the factional division] on Israel,” Tarzan said. “We consider that the responsibility falls on the two brothers that are pictured in our film, that are killing each other. One is representing Hamas and the other, Fatah. “I believe that if everyone forgot about the political problems for a little while and tried to create something for his society or her society,” brother Arab said, “then the entire world would be living in peace. “All religions say this, whether it be Judaism, Islam, Christianity; they all send this message of peace. They're not for violence.” The filmmakers, of course, are not naive; they live in a cauldron of hatred. “Of course, you'll find groups that don't agree,” Tarzan acknowledged. “We can't say that everyone in Israel agrees and in Palestine, people don't agree. But at the end of the day, everyone wants peace; everyone wants to live and everyone wants to be safe.” The brothers believe everyone wants something else, as well: to live in the midst of beauty. “In spite of the situation with Israel and the Israeli military operations and in spite of the Palestinian division,” Tarzan testified, “Gaza is a very beautiful place. It's very beautiful and the people of Gaza are really good people. They are loving people; they are people who love others. It's a very nice place to be.” “As an artist,” added Arab, ”it's true that I try to picture what we're going through and the sufferings of our people. But at the same time, you can't forget the beauty of the world, the beauty of what surrounds you. “What we try to do is picture beauty, look for beauty. It doesn't matter which side you're on. Beauty is what matters; beauty is what's important.” Tarzan and
Arab are intent on spreading that message, among their own people and the Israelis.
“Maybe we could think of a way to have the two different nations, Palestine and Israel; we can all agree on this,” ventured Tarzan. “We live and they live. We're human beings, just like them.”
“This is the Earth,” agreed Arab. “What's the purpose of us fighting each other? There's no point.”
Editor’s note:
Arab and Tarzan will present their film before a live audience for the first time Wednesday, Oct. 26, at 7:15 p.m. at the Alamo Drafthouse Ritz Theater.
After the screening, the brothers, joined by the Austin audience, will see their first film in a theater setting. On the screen: Ingmar Bergman’s “Cries and Whispers.”
The Alamo has also kicked off a “ Kickstarter ” fundraising project to raise at least $20,000 to help the brothers turn their short film into a full-length feature.

http://www.kxan.com/dpp/entertainment/movies/film-comes-from-deep-in-the-art-of-gaza

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فبراير 1, 2012

Brothers from Gaza in Austin for screening of award-winning film

It's a week of firsts for twins Ahmed and Mohammed Abu Nasser from the Gaza Strip: their first trip to America, their first trip to a movie theater and their first chance to sit with an audience and watch a short film they created.

The Alamo Drafthouse Ritz will screen “The Colorful Journey” — written by, directed by and starring the 24-year-old Abu Nassers — to the public at 7:15 tonight, followed by the Swedish film “Cries and Whispers” by Ingmar Bergman.

It is a special opportunity, as there are no movie theaters in Gaza, said Ahmed Abu Nasser, who goes by the artist name Tarzan.

“My dad loves cinema, and we became interested in cinema through television,” he said in Arabic.  “You could take anything away from us but our TV. For us, it was a huge dream that we would become actors.”

Drafthouse Chief Creative Officer Henri Mazza  said he and others learned about the brothers through an article in The Guardian, a London newspaper. The Drafthouse often brings international filmmakers for screenings, but this visit was more challenging to plan than others, said Carrie Matherly , assistant to Drafthouse CEO Tim League.

“These guys had never left Gaza. They didn't have travel documents, and we had a significant language barrier,” Matherly said. “But they were determined to get here no matter what, and we were determined to help them.”

It took more than a month to get the necessary documents. The brothers spent several weeks in Egypt waiting for an appointment at the U.S. Embassy. They say it was worth the effort.

Mohammed Abu Nasser, who g

oes by the artist name Arab, said the vivid colors of Austin surprised him, especially as he and his brother were flying over the city.

“I've seen colors since I've been here that I've never seen in nature before — purples and browns and greens and yellows,” he said. “It's an art city. There is nothing that is put in a place where it shouldn't be.”

The film's title, “The Colorful Journey,” comes from the name of an Israeli military special operation. The film depicts a painter grappling with a scene in which two men who resemble each other face off with guns. It has won awards in the Middle East. The brothers also have designed a series of movie posters based on the names of Israeli military operations in the area and said they hope to inspire community change with their art.

“The dream is still with us that one day we can study directing and help show the beauty we live in,” Ahmed Abu Nasser said. “Every one of us in this world is trying.”

The twins, who work as artists full time, selling paintings in addition to making films, chose “Cries and Whispers” for their first movie theater experience because it struck them as an “honest movie” when they saw it on television years ago, Mohammed Abu Nasser said.  The twins said they hope to see a few more films before heading back to Gaza next week.

[email protected]; 445-3553

http://www.statesman.com/news/local/brothers-from-gaza-in-austin-for-screening-of-1934013.html

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فبراير 1, 2012

The cinema industry in Gaza BBC Arabic T.V

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