December 3rd 2008; day 16 of 18 of filming

This is a quick update- need to get some rest in preparation for another full day.
Just wanted to assure everyone that last night’s doom and gloom was an aberration in an otherwise energetic and optimistic shoot.

Today, Wednesday, we were back at the house in Knightsbrige.
We filmed the kitchen scenes between Bisan and Ziyad, and between Bisan, Yusif and Suad.
We also filmed the scenes in the kitchen in which Bisan jots down her memories into a notebook.
Daphne agreed that it would be a good idea for someone to read aloud during the actual filming of the scene the thoughts that will later be imparted in voiceover . As the only person on set who looks like he hasn’t anything to do, it fell to me to read the lines.
Mahmoud called the scene; I whispered action and began reading. The personal layers of memories that are evoked by the text made me quite emotional. I mentioned it to Daphne; “good, it helped me”, she said later.

We filmed the bedsit scenes in other parts of the house; Daniel did wonders with the limitations of trying to make a room with a particular colour theme in walls and furniture into two separate locations.

Alex helped greatly by suggesting that we take an insert of a photo taken in 1938 of a group of Iraqi musicians. I had wanted to ask for this shot, but since we were running so late and the crew had kindly stayed on beyond the 12 hour shift, I wasn’t sure if I it would be fair on the team to ask for one more setup. I think Alex charmed the camera department:- )

Tomorrow, we are back close to Notting Hill Gate. We also need to film the street protest, in addition to a whole series of car scenes.

Arij and Kawa are doing their best to find Nasri an alternative flight to allow him to stay a day longer on the shoot. If we manage this, then we will extend the shoot by a day to Saturday. The crew have generously agreed to do the extra day. Bless them all- they are my heroes…

Talking of heroes… here are one or two… more to follow

Mahmoud-Alex-boom boom and Amelie in green room Knightsbridge 3-12-08DSC_0099

Valentina, Arij and Tina. Should I be worried?

Daphne in the big kitchen scene

Nawras and Nawal-

Andy- at the end of the big kitchen scene.

Rida Hamdi in the role of Tariq, the maths teacher

Habibi Kawa

The sound department- Axle and you know who:- )

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