Help Nadia Ghanem attend UnionDocs Lab this summer!

Nadia Ghanem’s UnionDocs Lab Crowdfunding

by UnionDocs

  • $3,500.00

  • $350.00

  • 6

    Days to go
Raised Percent :
Minimum amount is $ Maximum amount is $
Egypt / France

I am thrilled to share that I’ve been accepted into the prestigious Early Production Lab at UnionDocs in New York! This month-long documentary intensive residency program is a unique opportunity for me to develop my new film, *Looking for Spiderman*, with the guidance of experienced mentors and a vibrant community of fellow filmmakers.

I’m Nadia Ghanem, an Egyptian filmmaker, cultural manager, and programmer living between Cairo and Paris. Currently studying directing at La Fémis, I have previously directed *Three Disappearances And A Song* (2021), which has been screened and awarded at numerous international film festivals. Now, I am working on my first feature documentary, *Looking for Spiderman*, which has already received development grants from various esteemed organizations.

Driven to delve deeper into this journey of self-exploration(and exposition), I embarked on this new journey where I explore the history of my as it intersects with pivotal moments in the collective Egyptian history family from the 1960’s to the present day. I started developing this project 2 years ago as a short film, but it soon grew to be a feature-length endeavor as more histories started to unravel in my research. The film follows the decision of my brother as he drops out of school to join the military, while my grandmother, on her death bed, starts to see visions of her late cousin, the infamous former minister Shams Badran, who is affiliated with the 1967 defeat. My father believes that the sins of the older generations echo in the present.

 All these intertwined stories are mirrored in a novel written by my grandfather in the 1980’s, titled The Elephants, which follows the journey of a man who lost contact with his son after the latter decided to leave the country to join a paramilitary group. A voice-over reads out excerpts from the novel that prophesize the family’s present turmoil as the film progresses. 

**Why I Need Your Help:**

To fully embrace this invaluable opportunity at UnionDocs, I need to raise $3,500. This amount will cover the program tuition, housing, and travel expenses to New York. Your support will enable me to bring *Looking for Spiderman* to life and share a story that transcends personal and historical boundaries.

**Join Me:**

I invite you to be a part of this journey. Your contribution, no matter the size, will make a significant impact. Thank you for believing in my vision and supporting independent filmmaking.

With deep gratitude,  

Nadia Ghanem

About the Summer Documentary Labs:

The Uniondocs Summer Documentary Lab are a program for a select group of media artists from the US and abroad. Based in one of NYC’s most exciting neighborhoods, Ridgewood, Queens, the Summer Labs offer a platform for participants to spend the Summer making strides and clarify the creative direction of their projects to attract the potential team members, funders and producers they need to find their way to the finish. An intensive schedule of screenings, open seminar discussions, weekly industry “field trips,” and inspiring artist visits from some of the most dynamic voices across the field of documentary, the SUMMER DOCUMENTARY LABS are tightly structured environments that bring participants into a select group of emerging filmmakers to get challenged and encouraged to think through every aspect of their works-in-progress.

Drawing inspiration from across disciplines, this intensive program should not be mistaken for an industrial, journalistic, or traditional documentary training. Scholar Scott MacDonald highlighted in The New York Times that, “UnionDocs has a healthy sense that the older definitions of what constitutes ‘experimental’ cinema and what constitutes ‘documentary’ are up for grabs.” Much emphasis is placed on workshopping lab participants’ writing about their projects as a way to both clarify the creative direction and attract potential team members, funders and producers. Participants receive focused, honest and helpful feedback on their project proposals from prominent documentary artists and industry experts.

The Early Production Lab in July is for projects about to go into production. Filmmakers have already likely shot some of their material and have access to their subjects and are looking for ways to strengthen their media samples, and pitches and work through the ideas as they approach the production stage and plan for the entire process all the way through to distribution.