Shooting the making of Baghdad Film School
Shuchen Tan would have blessed her non-Dutch features when she landed in Baghdad to shoot a film that transcends all accepted norms of filmmaking.
The Dutch filmmaker was in the volatile country to make a film on the first independent film school in the country.
The first impression of the city, she remembers, was of shock at witnessing all the destruction. Speaking from The Netherlands to Khaleej Times, Tan said the idea of the film runs back to the period just after the ‘fall of Baghdad,’ when she met Iraqi-born filmmaker Maysoon Pachachi in the UK.
The ‘crew’ was careful never to venture beyond any territory that their hosts in Iraq considered hostile. At the end of the shoot, Tan had some 35 hours of film plus countless hours of video footage by the students. The true task to put together Baghdad Film School, in fact, started then.