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Alumni film in Oscar selection

A film produced and directed by Northern Film School alumni was chosen to represent Iraq at the Oscars.

Film camera

The film, Al Rahal (The Journey), was Iraq’s official selection for the foreign-language film category at the 2019 Oscars.

Mohamed Al-Daradji, director, and Isabelle Stead, producer, have worked along side each other on a number of previous projects, including ‘Son of Babylon’ and ‘In My Mother’s Arms’.

Mohamed studied BA (Hons) Film and Moving Image Production, graduating in 2003 and went on to study MA Film and Moving Image Production, where he met Isabelle who was on the same course.

Keith Dando, course director in the School of Film, Music and Performing Arts, said: “The Northern Film School are delighted to hear that Al Rahal has been selected as Iraq’s entry for the 2019 Oscars under the foreign film category.”

“The director and producer, Mohamed and Isabelle, were both students here at the Northern Film School and have gone on to forge notable careers in the film industry. They are a real inspiration to future Northern Film School graduates.”

Al Rahal premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival 2018 in the Contemporary World Cinema Section, and was also shown as part of the Leeds International Film Festival in 2018.

On 1 March the film became the first homemade picture in 27 years to be released theatrically in Iraq.

The Academy Awards, also known as the Oscars, are awards for artistic and technical merit in the film industry, given annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

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