January 19, 2009
By Rana Sweis
AMMONNEWS – During a 10 day workshop, members of non-governmental organizations as well as university students in Jordan got a glimpse into the power of filmmaking. The workshop focused on the use of film in shedding light on social issues in Jordan. The first few days were spent discussing theoretical aspects of filmmaking and exchanging ideas. The young NGO members spent almost four days shooting and then began writing, editing and mixing. This week, all four short documentaries were shown at the Royal Film Commission. Topics covered by NGO members included adult literacy, autism, student rights and a day in the life of a social worker in Jordan.
The workshop conducted by Yasir Khan, Professor at the American University of Cairo and a multimedia journalist and documentary filmmaker, says he hopes the participants will continue to use what they learned to create documentaries. On the first day of the workshop, Khan made sure the various ideas pointed out by the students remained focused. “Craft a focus statement and come back tomorrow,” he told the participants. “Every shot has to have meaning.”
As the students sat mixing and editing, many say they were pleased with this opportunity, the first of its kind in the kingdom. “It was a great opportunity for me and it is a way to convey to the public severe social problems in Jordan,” says Abdullah Momani, a journalism student at Yarmouk University.