Qalqilya is a feature-length documentary film about Sajed, a visionary skater determined to build a club for the “X-Games,” an avant-garde group of misfits from Qalqilya, Palestine. Living in a conservative city surrounded by a wall and struggling to bring his community out of the margins, Sajed realizes he may have to risk everything in order to keep his dream alive.
After several years following the X-Games, embedding into their community, building a skate ramp and filming their story, we are now in the editing room. Our goal is to produce a rough-cut this Winter. But in order to get there and release the film in 2018 we need your help.
The production of Qalqilya has already created impact on the ground in Palestine, and the film has yet to be released! In 2013, our story inspired the construction of a state-of-the-art skate ramp in Qalqilya. And in 2016, we partnered with US pro skater Kenny Reed to create SkateQilya: a youth empowerment program using skateboarding to teach art, community building, and leadership skills to girls and boys in Qalqilya, Palestine. Our 2016 skate camp was the first co-ed athletic program in the North of the West Bank.
We have many ways for you to get involved.
- Make a tax-deductible donation of any amount and become a member of the team.
- Donate $150 and pay for one shift of translating. We can’t edit without the footage translated!
- Become an “Ambassador” and connect us with your community. Every post, tweet and conversation helps.
- Become a “Secretary of State” and host a event in your neighborhood.
- Purchase a limited edition photograph of US pro skater, Kenny Reed, skating on the wall surrounding Qalqilya.
- Become a producer! We are offering titles in the film for certain levels of funding and/or fundraising.
We have received many positive responses to Qalqilya over the past few years. Festivals from around the world have expressed great interest in screening the film upon its completion. Some notable examples of coverage include The Daily Beast, which featured a story about the film and the skate ramp it inspired; Al Jazeera, who filmed the X-Games team for their English channel; and Tony Hawk, a skateboarding legend, who posted one of Adam’s photographs on his Instagram page, attracting over 25,000 “likes” within just a few days.
It’s easy to react to any project about the Middle East with a feeling of dread and ennui, but I urge anyone with that reaction to watch even a few minutes of Adam’s footage. If you’re anything like me, you’ll lean forward in your chair, and find yourself caught up in the heartfelt desires of a group of young Palestinians who simply want to express themselves through movement and music.– Jack Lechner, executive producer of the Oscar-winning documentary The Fog of War and the Oscar-nominated independent film Blue Valentine.