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Palestinian film nominated for Oscar

Sunday January 13, 2013 08:55:44 PM, IINA

Ramallah: A Palestinian film portraying the life of a Palestinian photographer and his son in a village witnessing the Palestinian-Israeli conflict on daily basis was nominated for an Oscar in the documentary feature category.

“5 Broken Cameras,' the documentary directed by Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi, tells the story of a Palestinian man who lives in the small Palestinian village of Bilin, northwest of Ramallah, which is most famous for its popular and nonviolent weekly protests which started back in 2005, WAFA news agency reported.


The entire movie was shot in and around Bilin and presents the stories of the director, Burnat, who took upon himself the responsibility of documenting the Israeli violations, raids, peaceful protests, the life of his son who was born with the beginning of the nonviolent resistance movement in the village and other outstanding figures and friends in the village.

The title of the documentary refers to the five cameras that were smashed by Israeli soldiers while recording the struggle and steadfastness of the people of Bilin.


“I started documenting what happens in Bilin from Israeli violations and raids to protests held by the residents as a way to expose the Israeli practices against Palestinians,” Burnat told WAFA.


“I later decided that I want to make a movie that tells the story of Bilin through authentic Palestinian voices.” Burnat said he asked the help of Davidi who used to come to Bilin a lot to film and participate in the protests.


“I don’t think the help of an Israeli director has affected the movie in the least since I am well aware of Davidi’s position regarding the conflict,” he said.

When asked about Israeli media referring to the movie as an Israeli film, he said that the film is 100% Palestinian made by a Palestinian director and tells the story of the Palestinians of Bilin.


He said “Israel is trying to take advantage of this nomination and attribute it to itself.”


Burnat spent five years working on his documentary which received high ratings by both critics and activists around the globe and was screened in the United States and many European countries and received about 25 international awards.

A review published in the Observer said that the movie “presents with overwhelming power a case of injustice on a massive scale, and gives a direct experience of what it's like to be on the receiving end of oppression and dispossession, administered by the unyielding, stony-faced representatives of those convinced of their own righteousness.”


Burnat said that the movie is a huge success not only for him as the director or the people of Bilin, but for every Palestinian who believe in the lawfulness of the Palestinian cause.


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