A production team in Gaza are busy putting the final touches to their new animated feature ‘The Scarecrow’.
The film that this team of Palestinian animators are working on is in 3D, something they say is a first for the coastal enclave.
The 40 minute feature is about an orphaned girl, whose parents leave a scarecrow for her. The scarecrow is then taken away by the Israeli army.
According to the film’s producer Khalil Almuzain it tackles issues related to loss, something he says Palestinians are all too familiar with, “The story addresses a very important issue, and that is loss in general, because the Palestinians always lose things, some lose their homes, those who’ve lost their mothers, fathers, sons,’’ said Almuzain.
“This is a painful part for the Palestinians and we through The Scarecrow, we wanted to send a message to the world about the story of loss for Palestinians, the loss of everything. And I hope they’ll get the message,” he added.
The 3D production is being produced by Zaitoon Animation and Games which is part of Gaza’s University College of Applied Sciences.
Among their clients are the British Council, UNICEF and the World Bank.
It’s the World Bank who has given them the funds for this project.
Those working on the film say the current situation facing the people of Gaza is portrayed in the film,
“The relation between the children [in the film] was a simple relationship. But the occupation made the relationship stronger, so they face it and that is what the film is about,” said designer Osaid Madee.
Israel tightened its blockade on Gaza after Hamas, an Islamist group that refuses to recognize the Jewish state, took power more than five years ago. But under international pressure, Israel began to ease the restrictions in 2010 and has allowed international aid agencies to import construction material.
Others working on the film say it wasn’t always easy, but they feel they can now compete with other Arab productions, “The ‘Scarecrow’ film is an achievement that we reached, step by step and after many trails. We can’t say we failed, but the opposite, it leads to us being successful and to this great production. And we were able to produce video and audio of the same quality to at least compare with the Arab standard,” said sound man Mohammed Abu Shanab.
But the producers are now faced with a problem, they say the 40, 000 U.S dollars that they were given to make the film has now run out. But they remain committed to finishing the film without the cash.