In 2012 I wrote a paper which suggested that some people, like myself, could have a more beneficial impact on our communities by being on the front lines of filmmaking. This would mean not only helping communities find a film-making mentor but helping them to become their own filmmaking communities.
The idea of volunteering was suggested too, but we hadn’t thought through how we could actually volunteer in a meaningful way. I was keen on that – as I’d spent a significant part of my childhood at my grandparents’ place in the UK, I wanted to have a greater impact there as well. I felt a real responsibility – as an immigrant and the first in my family to go to university – to try and find ways my family could help.
What has been your biggest learning experience?
We’ve done a lot of writing and researching on this. Some of our research has been more successful than others. That research showed that many immigrants were working on filmmaking (I’m not referring to film-making by any other definition that doesn’t include TV-cameras), but we hadn’t actually studied it on a wider scale. I had done some research beforehand and thought it would give us an insight as to what might be the best thing to do when faced with such a situation. In fact, this research has helped us as a team and my main purpose to this project has become working on a film called No One Goes Home.
What made you think about this subject?
I grew up in the UK and was an outsider but for whatever reason I never did get an education. I had a very strict, hardline atheist teacher, so I was always more likely to take up a science subject at school – my father was a doctor.
When I was in second year of primary school I found I wasn’t very good at maths – I’d been told by teachers that my maths abilities were terrible for that (I was told I couldn’t memorise the answer to that exam question). To be fair to my teachers this was a case of me being taught wrong – some of my teachers weren’t very good at maths themselves. But what made it worse is that I went off to college where I was given a completely different attitude – they encouraged me to take maths and computer science and said I were great at those subjects and I could do any subject if I put in the work.
What were your motivations for this project?
In researching documentary film making, I’ve found it’s a very popular
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