For Sama director dedicates BAFTA award to the 'Syrian people still suffering'
For Sama, a documentary produced by Syrian refugee and film maker Waad Al-Kateab about life inside besieged Aleppo won big at the Baftas last night. The documentary was nominated for a total of four different awards at the Baftas, making it the most nominated documentary in the history of the British Film Academy Awards.
For Sama took home the best documentary award:
The moving film showcases first-hand footage filmed by Al-Kateab as she goes through life in a city under siege; from meeting her husband and falling in love to getting married and giving birth to her daughter Sama, she has documented it all. The footage offers heart wrenching insight into the turmoil faced by civilians during the Syrian Civil War from places that were inaccessible to international press and photographers.
The acclaimed movie, which was filmed over five years by Al-Kateab, has already been awarded the Prix L’Oeil D’Or for Best Documentary at the Cannes Film Festival as well as four trophies at the British Independent Film Awards in 2019.
Al-Kateab's speech began: “Thank you so much. First, thank you and congratulations for all the other nominees.
“Now, after one year of releasing the film, we’ve become also friends. he film was… we should’ve been in here… in one moment in 2016, three years ago, we were in Aleppo and we were in a basement of a filled hospital.
“Hamza, me and Sema and we heard and we were hearing the shelling and the bombing all the time around us.
“In one moment in 2016 when I was in contact with Channel 4 News we even thought where we should bury our footage in case we didn’t make it. This needed to be saved. We did the film and I’m so glad and I’m so honoured that I’m standing here.
“Thank you so much BAFTA for recognising the film. As we speak now, the situation in Syria is still so bad.
“As we’re speaking there is bombing and shelling on over 3.5 million civilians. These people they should hear your voice now, they should hear that Britain as a country won’t let that happen again.
“I know it’s so hard but this award I would dedicate it to the great Syrian people.”