KUN0035 4 GEN 0461 KUWAIT /KUNA-QQQ2
US film festival in Kuwait highlights children's tolerance-promotion power
By Eman Al-Awadhi (with photos)
KUWAIT, March 12 (KUNA) -- Young people have an enormous power and are able
to employ it in promoting tolerance and better understanding of cultures,
which is the theme of the theatrical documentary "Paper Clips" being screened
as part of the American Independent Film Festival in Kuwait.
In an interview with Kuwait News Agency (KUNA), the film's script writer
and director Joe Fab said, "I am honored to be in the Middle East for the
first time to screen a movie that holds messages that are relevant and helpful
for us all to think about."
The documentary follows 12 and 13-year-old students of the small town of
Whitwell, Tennessee, as they worked on a project that taught them all about
tolerance and brought them in contact with people from different countries and
Although the film focused on a specific project, the director explained it
was really "about children and the power that young people have."
Fab said he was happy to have traveled around the US to screen the film and
to find that it had inspired other children to generate their own projects
such as raising money for work in Rwanda and producing the world's largest
book on peace.
Asked about activities while in Kuwait, he said Julie Stevens, the visiting
producer and director of "Life After Tomorrow" who was also participating in
the festival, and himself had been talking to students and other local film
makers, noting these talks were "feeding" his interest and made him realize
how much he needed to learn about this part of the world.
"I heard a lot about the First Gulf War (1991) and I am interested in
spending more time here in the future to make a film about this period ... it
is my first impression that the story has not been sufficiently told," he said.
He explained that he was drawn to "people stories" that audiences could
identify with in some way, saying that if he were to make a film in Kuwait, he
would have to identify "individuals whose stories would have some variety and
be truly representative, and would in some sense still be continuing today."
Fab said he loved his work but that he could not do what he did "if people
aren't willing to trust you and open up to you."
For people to be generous in sharing their experiences and the stories that
really matter to them was "a great honor" and the whole process of making such
films was "genuinely a privilege".
The American Independent Film Festival, in which a total of five films will
be screened, is being held by the US Embassy in Kuwait between March 11 and 13
at Shaab Cinema in cooperation with CineMagic.(end)
KUNA 121255 Mar 07NNNN