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Stolen Films Imaginary

In 1982, during Israel’s invasion of Lebanon and siege of Beirut, the archive of the Palestinian Cinema Institute was stolen by the Israeli military in one of their most enduring crimes of cultural genocide. The archive has never been recovered; its absence a gaping wound in the visual heritage of an occupied nation. In a collective act of cultural resistance, the Stolen Films Imaginary will “project” a number of these missing films and, over a blank screen, invited guests will narrate the stories of the films they long for, based on existing documentation, memories, and their own desires. This is a cinema of absence and its corollary: the invincibility of longing and imagination.

Guests include researcher and writer Leena Habiballah, academic and filmmaker Mario Hamad, writer, poet and multi-disciplinary artist Zena Agha, screenwriter and director Said Zagha, filmmaker and journalist Marah Rayan, and moving image artist Sarah Wood.

Stolen Films Imaginary and Kanafani Karaoke have been conceived by filmmaker Saeed Taji Farouky as an extension to the screening programme OF THE PEOPLE, FOR THE PEOPLE: MILITANT PALESTINIAN CINEMA (1968-1982) and THE NEW MILITANTS.