A Syrian precedent in the Oscar … two films in the short list


In an unprecedented first, two Syrian films were nominated for the Academy Award 2020 in the short list in the documentary category.

Among the 15 films chosen by the Academy of Film Arts and Sciences for the Academy Awards, out of 159 films, the Syrian film “To Sama” was shortlisted in the long documentary category.

Among the ten films chosen from 96 films, “Cave” was nominated in the category of short documentaries.

The Syrian director, the heroine of the movie “To Sama”, promised Al-Khatib a video clip, in which he shows the joy of the team by nominating the film for the short list of Academy Awards, alongside her husband and British director Edward Watts, who co-directed the film.

The film tells the story of Waed Al-Khatib herself for five years, where she lived in Aleppo under the Russian bombing and during the siege of the Syrian regime forces in the city, then her marriage and the birth of her child Sama, who lived with her mother her first year under the bombing.

Waad, who had left her university in Aleppo to live in the liberated areas from the grip of the Syrian regime, documented her photography taught her to document the suffering of the Syrians and how to live under the bombing, and in light of violent clashes through her account of what happened to her daughter Sama.

Before arriving in the Oscars, “To Sama” won about 44 awards in 2019, including the Golden Eye in Cannes Film Festival, And the Grand Jury Prize at a Festival and Conference SXSW South and Southwest For documentaries, in addition to a number of awards at the British Independent Film Awards, and dozens of other awards.

As for the Cave movie, by its Syrian director, Firas Fayyad, it tells about tragic details in the Syrian war, through events inside the Secret Cave Hospital in Eastern Ghouta during its siege for about six years between 2012 and 2018, where the film traces the lives of three doctors and a doctor trying to save the victims of the Russian bombing and the Syrian regime For civilians.

The film produced “National Geographic”, and won about ten international awards, most notably the award for best documentary at the Valladolid International Film Festival of 2019, before the Academy Awards website announced its nomination on the short list.

The 91st Academy Awards will be held on February 9th.


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