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FROM UNDER THE RUBBLE is a high impact feature length documentary that puts a human face to war and gives voice to the civilian perspective. The overwhelming majority of collateral damage in conflict zones are dead and wounded women and children who far outnumber the casualties incurred on the combatants.
We live in a time when women and children have limited protection under international law. Zeinat Samouni and her seven children live with the shocking memory of what happened to their family during Operation Cast Lead that saw the father and four year old brother, along with forty-eight other Samouni family members killed and many more injured.
The psychological damage and trauma does not end. It continues on with each ensuing conflict. Zeinat’s six year old daughter, Ansam, and her siblings have now lived through three wars. When the bombings begin, Zeinat blocks the windows and tells her children it is only a storm and what they hear is thunder and lightning.
FROM UNDER THE RUBBLE is Zeinat and her childrens’ personal experience of what happened in the week that the IDF came to their farming region to set up their base during Operation Cast Lead from January 2nd – 7th 2009. Their story will be told through the use of archival footage, footage shot in present Gaza and an animation that the Samouni children created as party of their trauma recovery therapy. The documentary will juxtapose the innocent perspective of children with the harsh realities of war.
A passionate group of people fully dedicated to making this powerful story.
Anne Tsoulis (Writer/Director/co-producer/Project creator) is an experienced filmmaker with over twenty-five years working within the film industry, with numerous credits in drama and documentary. For Anne, part of the process of making this documentary is also to work with filmmakers in Gaza to help them build up their skills and to assist them to have a voice on an international platform.
Anne says “I went to Gaza and was overcome by the warmth and resilience of its people. Zeinat Samouni is a lioness, and the mother of all mothers. What she and her children have had to endure defies the imagination. Every day is a struggle for her to feed her children. Every day is a struggle for her to deal with their emotional trauma, let alone her own. The stigma of being a widowed single mother makes it even more difficult for her. Her last words to me when I left Gaza were, “Anne, don’t forget us.” The words are etched into my brain and this makes me determined to make this documentary. Her children stole my heart – they are my children now too.”
Fadi Hossam Hanona (Co-producer/Cinematographer) is a Palestinian cameraman and photographer working inside Gaza on news and current affairs for international broadcasters.
Fadi says “FROM UNDER THE RUBBLE is the current film I am working on with director and producer Anne. I have feeling this film is quite different from all the films that I have worked on. We have made a great effort me and Anne and the translator Ebaa. I talk to you as a person and filmmaker living in the Gaza Strip. It must show the world what is happening here so I hope you can help in the production of this film by donating. Every day here is a struggle for us. We are locked away from the world. When Anne came to Gaza, it gave us hope, and for me as a filmmaker to be able to make such an important documentary.”
John Moore (Producer) is the principal of Melbourne based production company Sensible Films. He has over twenty years experience as an independent producer. His latest film, the feature length documentary PUTUPARRI AND THE RAINMAKERS premiered at the Melbourne International Film Festival in August 2015, won Australia’s richest film prize in September and screened at festivals around the world during 2016.
John says “I am delighted to have recently come on board to work with Anne and Fadi on seeing this important documentary come to fruition. FROM UNDER THE RUBBLE takes a very personal POV, looking at the conflict through the experiences of one Palestinian family. It is a big responsibility telling such an emotive story in the context of such a highly contested conflict. There is however a lot of material to inform our work as the war has been critiqued by an independent UN team in the Goldstone Report and several books have been written about it including by Australian philosopher Raymond Gaita. I hope we can do justice to both sides of the conflict.”
Ken Sallows (Editor) is one of Australia’s most experienced and highly respected editors working on everything from art house films to action movies and many award winning observational documentaries. His credits include MALCOLM, PROOF, LOVE AND OTHER CATASTROPES, CHOPPER, GETTIN’ SQUARE, TOM WHITE and THE COMBINATION.
Ken says “I have been fortunate to work on editing a very good rough cut of Anne’s film, FROM UNDER THE RUBBLE. I believe it is quite a remarkable film that Anne is making, for her intention is not to make a political diatribe, but a humanist film about survival.”
Anne Tsoulis has started a crowdfunding campaign with a goal of raising $20k. The donations received will go to completing the finance required to finish the documentary, which is currently at a rough cut stage.
In the creator’s own words: We are pleased to announce that we have now produced a 72 minute rough cut for the film with the assistance of the South Australian Film Corporation, Screen Australia and public contributions through goFundme, Documentary Australia Foundation and the AWESOME Foundation. With your help, every dollar gets us closer to the finishing line. We’ve climbed the mountain, now we need your help to finish this powerful and moving documentary.
Thank you so much for any help you’re able to give. And please forward this campaign to anyone you think may be interested and willing to help.
Any amount would count and it would be much appreciated if you are not able to give then to SHARE SHARE SHARE! Thank you all and much love!
Have a look at the gofundme link below for more information: