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18/01/2017 - 19:27hs

Film producers seek support for work on refugees

Crowdfunding campaign aims to raise money to tell stories of Syrian families in Brazil, Germany and Jordan. The idea is for ‘Salam, Syria’ to be completed until the end of the year.

Press Release

Families interviewed will receive part of revenues

São Paulo – A crowdfunding campaign on the web has been launched by three Brazilians to raise funds to make a documentary on Syrian refugees. The first national initiative on the subject, the documentary aims to tell the stories of six refugee families in Brazil, Germany and Jordan.

The idea is for “Salam, Syria” to be completed until the end of the year, according to sociologist Juliana Torquato, author and director of the documentary. She’s been leading the project for a year and a half – the inspiration came when she was living in Jordan in 2015: “The issue of Syrian refugees is a worldwide discussion and affects all of us. Helping them eases the suffering for some,” she says.

The campaign’s goal is to raise BRL 66,000 (USD 20,430), enough to cover the costs of equipment, tickets, lodging and food for the staff. Joining Torquato on the trip to Germany and Jordan will be producers Joice Oliveira and Rodrigo Moraes, and sound and visual crew. Everybody involved have abdicated of salaries: the idea is to profit with the commercialization of the film.

There’s another interesting point: 50% of revenues from the movie’s rights will go to the families interviewed for the film. “They are people with good education, who could’ve been practicing their profession but aren’t due to their current refugee situation,” explains the director.

One of the families interviewed will be the one of engineer Talal Altinawi, owner of restaurant Talal Syrian Cuisine in the neighborhood of Brooklin in São Paulo. Curiously, his venture was opened via a crowdfunding campaign. “Today, he’s already employing people in Brazil,” points out the director.

Torquato says that recently she scheduled an interview with a family from Kurdistan, Northeast Syria, living in Fortaleza, Ceará state. The crew will also interview another family in São Paulo, one in Augsburg, Germany, one in the Zaatari refugee camp and one in Amman, both in Jordan. All the families were picked based on contact made with activists via Facebook and come from different places in Syria.

“Our intention is to tell the story in a diversified manner. Among the families interviewed, there are those pro-Assad and those pro-rebels,” says the director. The choices of places also have an explanation: Brazil was the Latin-American country that received the most refugees, Germany was the European nation that opened its doors the most to them and Jordan hosts the world’s second largest refugee camp, the Zaatari Camp.

The crowdfunding campaign will be on for 80 days, a period in which the staff expects to raise enough money to start recording. Torquato plans to start shooting in April.

Quick info
Information and donations at https://www.catarse.me/documentario_salam_siria_c17a or via Facebook https://www.facebook.com/salamsiria/

*Translated by Sérgio Kakitani

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