New documentary “Jihadists” explores extremist movement
New documentary “Jihadists” travels deep into Jihadi controlled territory to reveal the inner workings of extremist Islam, on DVD & Digital April 2, Directed by François Margolin & Lemine Ould Salem
While the impending defeat of Islamic State’s caliphate is being celebrated by media pundits, the ideology of Islamic extremism that fueled its ascendancy remains a global security threat. “Jihadists” offers viewers a rare and intimate look at the people absorbed by and preaching this complex ideology, through in-depth interviews with extremists across Mali, Tunisia, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Directed by filmmaker François Margolin and journalist Lemine Ould Salem, “Jihadists” was produced by Margo Cinema in co-production with France 3 Cinéma and Canal+, and in association with France Télévisions. Following theatrical runs in NYC and Los Angeles, “Jihadists” will be released on DVD and digital streaming platforms (Amazon & Vimeo) this April 2, with additional platforms to follow (iTunes, Google Play, Vudu).
“I think it is important to know today that these people who have decided to wage war on us exist, and represent an important minority inside Islam, even if, of course, the majority of Muslims don’t think like them,” says Director, François Margolin, who risked his life to interview jihadists including Ansar Dine leader Sanda Ould Bouamama, and the Al Qaeda affiliated Omar Ould Hamaha. “I think today it’s important to fight these people with ideas. It’s important to fight with Western values but also with Islamic values, a tolerant Islam, an Islam different from the one of the Salafists and the Jihadists.”
SYNOPSIS: Banned in France (released as ‘Salafistes’), “Jihadists” goes deep into the heart of the Salafi movement to reveal the inner workings of extremist Islam. A pair of documentarians were granted unparalleled access to fundamentalist clerics of Sunni Islam who proselytize for a “purer” form of Islam–including jihad of the sword–in Mali, Tunisia, Iraq and Afghanistan. Their theoretical interpretations are juxtaposed against images and footage from recruitment videos to show the hardline application of sharia law. Without experts contextualizing these events, the film, which inspired the Oscar-nominated feature, “Timbuktu”, paints a stark portrait of everyday life under jihadi rule.
Co-directed by Lemine Ould Salem of Mauritania and France’s François Margolin, an earlier version of the film was released in the days following the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris where it was mistakenly interpreted as an empathetic portrayal of jihadism.
Facebook & Twitter: @JihadistsFilm
Directed by: François Margolin & Lemine Ould Salem
“Grueling viewing – but it can help us understand terror.”
““A true masterpiece, enlightening in a way that no book or ‘expert’ on Islam has ever been.”
– Claude Lanzmann, Director (Shoah)
“It could be vital in defeating a twisted ideology.” – The Guardian, Natalie Nougayrède
ABOUT CINEMA LIBRE: Cinema Libre Studio is a full-service mini-studio known for producing and distributing high quality feature films and social impact documentaries. Headquartered in the Los Angeles area, the team has released over 200 films.
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Ray Hanania is an award winning political and humor columnist who analyzes American and Middle East politics, and life in general. He is an author of several books.
"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."
Hanania covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).
Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com, the TheArabDailyNews.com, www.TheDailyHookah.com and at SuburbanChicagoland.com. He has also published weekly columns in the Jerusalem Post newspaper, YNetNews.com, Newsday Newspaper in New York, the Orlando Sentinel Newspapers, and the Arlington Heights Daily Herald.
Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media. In 2009, Hanania received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. He was honored for his writing skills with two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild. In 1990, Hanania was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times editors for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
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