You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Maysaloun Hamoud on Why Palestinian Film ‘In Between’ Is Universal

Wednesday night in New York City, Kering held a screening of Maysaloun Hamoud‘s acclaimed film “Bar Bahar (In Between)” as part of its Women in Motion program, as well as a conversation between the Palestinian filmmaker and director Debra Granik, best known for the Oscar-nominated film “Winter’s Bone.”

Before the screening, Variety talked with the two directors, and Hamoud discussed the origins of her film, which she began work on six years ago at the height of the Middle East’s Arab Spring protest movement. “That spread the winds of change,” she said. “That spirit of anti-patriarchal, anti-conservative society, we wanted to bring all the dirty laundry outside. Because I am a woman director, I really want to bring it from our point of view in society.”

The acclaimed film tells the story of three young Palestinian women who share an apartment and, each in their own way, chafe against the oppressive society around them. “It created a community all over. There’s a lot of in-betweens, all over,” Hamoud added. “It’s a universal topic. It’s very nice to see your truth touch people.”

Granik added that she loves the film “because of the freshness, for me, and the non-conventional use of suspense. ” She continued, “What are these women going to do? There’s not a day that’s gone by this week where I haven’t thought about it, and that to me is gem in a film, to spur thinking.”

She then added, “I love that she poses this super-edgy question. It doesn’t matter what kind of liberal you are, if you want social justice, you have to give up something. It poses the question, what are you willing to give up? That ethical question is inherently scintillating.”

Granik is currently working on an adaptation of the novel “My Abandonment,” and Hamoud is planning on turning “Bar Bahar (In Between)” into a thematic trilogy. The Kering event was meant to highlight the work of female film directors, and Granik said that “because of the ones and zeros and how they get distributed has changed,” it’s more difficult than ever for small-scale filmmakers like herself to get their work in theaters, and was grateful for the support of institutions like Kering and Sundance.

“It’s not the body you are in but the story you are trying to tell,” Granik said. “If you are going to have a female protagonist, but she is never going to be naked in the film, that’s a huge hit financially. If you don’t solve something in American film with a firearm, we have trouble with alternative stakes. We are an all-time bloody, thirsty culture.”

More Scene

  • Karl Lagerfeld'Lagerfeld Confidential' Photocall at the

    Karl Lagerfeld Remembered at Costume Designers Guild Awards

    The death of fashion and costume designer Karl Lagerfeld cast somewhat of a shadow over the usually jubilant Costume Designers Guild Awards — the only award show where clothes literally steal the spotlight away from actors — which was held at the Beverly Hilton on Tuesday night. Here it was obvious that Lagerfeld’s impact on [...]

  • Kate Bosworth'Nona' film premiere, New York,

    Kate Bosworth Helps Launch Campaign for Female Filmmakers

    In her 20-year career in Hollywood, Kate Bosworth has starred in blockbusters like “Superman Returns” as well as indie darlings like 2014’s “Still Alice.” But the actress has always had a desire to get more involved from the ground up. Now, she is partnering with Women In Film and Chloe Wine Collection to launch the [...]

  • Amandla Stenberg and Sofia CarsonVanity Fair

    Oscar Week Kicks Off With Vanity Fair's New Hollywood Party

    The night was definitely still young Tuesday at Vanity Fair’s New Hollywood party in Los Angeles. The magazine kicked off Oscar week with a party — the first of its three-event Campaign Hollywood series — at Ysabel in West Hollywood to celebrate new and emerging talent. Co-hosted by Yalitza Aparicio, Henry Golding and Amandla Stenberg [...]

  • Oscars Ultimate Party Guide

    Oscars Ultimate Party Guide 2019

    Welcome to Oscar week. It’s the time of year when Hollywood’s film industry celebrates all things movies. But it’s certainly not just the big show everyone is looking forward to. With voting closed, it’s all about the parties now. Who’s doing what and where and when are they doing it are the questions everyone is [...]

  • Yalitza AparicioTeen Vogue Young Hollywood Party,

    'Roma' Star Yalitza Aparicio, 'Central Park Five's' Jharrel Jerome Sound Off on Trump

    Yalitza Aparicio recently reunited with Alfonso Cuarón, who directed her in “Roma,” for a W magazine photo project that featured her standing at various barriers built at the border between Mexico and the United States. The message? “You can make a name for yourself despite the differences,” Aparicio told Variety on Friday at Teen Vogue’s Young [...]

  • Karl LagerfeldChanel Paris-Londres 2007/8 Show, London,

    Legendary Fashion Designer Karl Lagerfeld Dies at 85

    Karl Lagerfeld, the fashion icon – and iconoclast – who outfitted and photographed such stars as Nicole Kidman and Lady Gaga, has died. He was 85. Lagerfeld died in Paris, fashion house Chanel said. Although his health had been failing, he kept working up to his death, issuing instructions regarding Fendi’s fall ready-to-wear collection, which [...]

  • Eric Wareheim, 'The Simpsons' E.P. Matt

    Beefsteak Gathers Comedy Bigwigs for Meat and Mayhem

    The masterminds behind Beefsteak, a debauched tribute to the meaty arts that raises thousands for the Los Angeles Food Bank, switch things up each year so that guests are never bored. Organized by comedy players including Eric Wareheim, “The Simpsons” executive producer Matt Selman, and ABC Studios VP of comedy Cort Cass with Redbird chef Neal [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content