Palestinian Film Director
“I’m not interested in showing the West that ‘Palestinians are humans, too’..” Annemarie Jacir
Annemarie Jacir is one of the leading figures of the Arab New Wave. Two of her films have premiered as official selections of the Cannes Film Festival, another film premiered in Venice and her latest film, When I Saw You, won the NETPAC award for Best Asian Film at the Berlin Film Festival.
Part of a group of Arab filmmakers pushing new boundaries, Annemarie has written, directed and produced over sixteen films.
One of Filmmaker magazine’s 25 New Faces of Independent Cinema, her short film Like Twenty Impossibles (Cinefondation 2003) was the first Arab short film in history to be an official selection of the Cannes Film Festival and continued to break ground when it went on to be a finalist for the Academy Awards.
Her second work to debut in Cannes, the critically acclaimed Salt of this Sea (Un Certain Regard 2008) was also the first feature film directed by a Palestinian woman. Salt of the Sea was Palestine’s 2008 Oscars Entry for Best Foreign Language Film, and went on to win the FIPRESCI Critics Award, and fourteen other international awards including Best Film in Milan and Traverse City, screening at more than two hundred festivals across the globe.
Her latest film When I Saw You won NETPAC’s Best Asian Film at the prestigious Berlin International Festival, Best Arab Film at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival, and Best Film in Amiens and Phoenix. It was the opening Gala film of the Bird’s Eye View Film Festival in London. Garnering a nomination at the Asian Pacific Screen Awards, it was also Palestine’s 2013 Oscars Entry for Best Foreign Language Film.
The production on When I Saw You was noted for being entirely Arab- and Palestinian-financed, with a Palestinian cast and crew; and Palestinian producers, marking a new trend for independent cinema.
With a commitment to teaching, training and hiring locally, Annemarie also curates, actively promoting independent cinema in the region. She is co-founder and chief curator of the groundbreaking Dreams of a Nation cinema project dedicated to the promotion of Palestinian cinema. In 2003, she organized and curated the largest travelling film festival in Palestine, which included the historic first screening in Palestine of several archival films made in the late 1960s/70s by filmmakers who were part of the various Palestinian resistance groups of the time.
Founder of Philistine Films, an independent production house, Annemarie collaborates regularly with fellow filmmakers. She also teaches screenwriting and works as a freelance editor as well as screenwriter. Currently she is completing a screenplay for Mira Nair and is in development on her next film.
BASED IN: Amman, Jordan and Ramallah, Palestine
LANGUAGES: English and Arabic.
ANNEMARIE ON SCREEN: