Words of Witness by Director Mai Iskander Opens the 12th Annual Media Democracy Days
Vancouver, B.C. – October 18, 2012. WORDS OF WITNESS, the new feature-length documentary from acclaimed filmmaker Mai Iskander, will open the 12th annual Media Democracy Days Vancouver (MDD) on November 2, 2012 in the Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema at SFU Woodward’s in downtown Vancouver.
Produced by Mai Iskander, Tiffany Shauer, Steve Cohen and Wynne Comer, WORDS OF WITNESS follows 22-year-old Egyptian journalist Heba Afify as she covers the Arab Spring from inside Tahrir Square for the English edition of the newspaper Al-Masry Al-Youm. The documentary frames the political turmoil of a nation seeking freedom and democracy through Heba’s coming of age story as a young journalist in the Middle East.
WORDS OF WITNESS was filmed on location in Tahrir Square throughout the revolution. Much of the film depicts director Iskander and Heba on the ground interviewing Egyptian citizens who wish to see Mubarak’s regime end, with footage capturing the escalating tension and chanting crowds from inside the movement. It also follows the story of Heba and her family, and shows how traditional values and gender roles challenge her desire to be a journalist.
In addition, the film will be preceded by a talk from this year’s keynote speaker, Dr. Sunera Thobani. Dr. Thobani is an renowned activist, who has formerly served the president of the National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC). She is currently an Associate Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at UBC and will be speaking on the representation of gender, race and power in North American news media.
WORDS OF WITNESS will be shown Friday, November 2, at 6:30PM in the Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema of SFU Woodward’s (149 W. Hastings St.). Attendance is free, but seating is limited. RSVP at http://mdd2012filmscreeing.eventbrite.com/. For complete programming details for Media Democracy Days Vancouver 2012, please visit www.mediademocracyday.org.