original title: ان تکوني افیغینیا
Becoming Iphigenia is a feature-length creative documentary. The film follows the story of nine young Syrian women who have fled to Germany to escape the war and, for some, to escape the society at home. They hail from different walks of life and from differing communities in Syria, and were brought together on stage at the Volksbühne in Berlin for roles in a modern adaptation of Euripides’ Iphigenia written by playwright Mohammad al-Attar and directed by Omar Abusaada. Reem Al-Ghazzi had close access to the cast of non-professional actresses. She filmed the preparations, rehearsals, discussions and the premiere, but also the women’s lives in Germany, outside the theatre. As the women spent more and more time together, they discovered that though they had left to escape pain and possible death, they actually carried these wherever they went. Could they escape the past, family, society and themselves?
Becoming Iphigenia will be preceded by a series of short films by Al-Ghazzi.
Fragile & Brittle — 2 min, Syria, 2012
Music Box — 1 min, Syria, 2014
1241 — 4 min, Syria, 2012
Reem Al-Ghazzi is a Syrian artist and documentary filmmaker from Damascus. She has directed and produced several short documentaries individually and as part of collectives. Her films have received awards at the Casablanca and Alexandria International Film Festivals, and have been screened at the Cinéma du réel in Paris and the Locarno International Film Festival. Al-Ghazzi has also published several articles and texts in Arabic newspapers. In 2010, she established the Stories Film Lab, a series of documentary workshops held across Syria. Becoming Iphigenia is her debut feature. The director won the Samira Al-Khalil award in Paris in March 2023 “in recognition of her cinematographic work, the courage of her artistic approaches, her influence on society, and her commitment to narrate the memory of the invisible Syrians”.
EST - English subtitles