Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Genius of Chaplin

One of my favorite Chaplin scenes. This is from The Gold Rush (1942). YouTube isn't the best place to see their expressions, but if you enlarge it to full frame you can look at their faces. Brilliantly comedy at its best.

The set up is that Charlie and this other guy are starving with nothing to eat, and then Charlie finds a solution to satisfy their hunger. Narration by Charlie Chaplin. Enjoy the link below.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Captain Abu Raed wins Best Feature in New Orleans

I'm sure you're sick of hearing about it, but I'm loving this. This is our 10th Award for Captain Abu Raed, and it's a very satisfying feeling to hear that audiences everywhere root for "Captain Abu". Keep your fingers crossed for the upcoming big race.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Captain Abu Raed wins in South Africa

After winning the Jury and Audience Awards in Traverse City, I woke up to the news that Captain Abu Raed also won BEST FIRST FEATURE in South Africa at the 29th Durban International Film Festival. Here's the LINK

Once again, it is truly an honor to be encouraged by festivals all over the world. From the beginning, our goal was to make a film of the highest international standards to prove that Jordan can have a spot on the map of world cinema.

Next stops:

- New Orleans on August 10
- Pyongyang, North Korea in mid-September
- New Jersey in mid-September
- Vancouver, Canada in late September
- Mill Valley in Northern California in October
- San Francisco in mid-October

Captain Abu Raed shines on the Midwest

First of all, God bless Michael Moore. Like Robert Redford with Sundance, Michael Moore and his team have created what has grow to become the biggest film festival in the Midwest, that is the Traverse City Film Festival, with over 90,000 attendees in its fourth year. And this week Abu Raed won both the Jury and the Audience awards for Best Feature Film, competing against both American and international films. The response of our audience of over 1000 people blew my mind. This was the 35th and 36th time that I see the film with an audience since our premier in Dubai. And it felt like I was seeing it for the first time. At the end of both screenings we received "thunderous" applause (as one article described it) and a very moving standing ovation. Imagine going up to the stage after your film and you look into the lights and you see everyone stand up clapping. It's both moving and inspiring to me.

But what's most important is that now I realize that we have a movie that is bigger than I ever thought. Based on the reactions we saw at Traverse City, where the viewers are not from the movie business, but from your everyday world, I am convinced that even though times are extremely tough for foreign films in the market now, we have a sleeper hit that will continue to grow and grow and grow thanks to word of mouth.

Thank you everyone who came to see Abu Raed, and to all those spreading the word about the little movie that could.