2020 NY Kurdish Film And Cultural Festival


The fourth NY Kurdish Film And Cultural Festival is only four days away!

This year’s festival will feature films from four parts of Kurdistan, music, dance, poetry, live events, and talks.

Please remember that ticket proceedings will go to the Kurdish Red Crescent, Heyva Sor a Kurdistane as they are providing shelter and food and mending wounds for hundreds and thousands of people in refugee camps. In 2019, during the three days festival, $3000  we raised over to donate to Heyva Sor.

Finally, festival will send secure links to those who purchase tickets, 

To learn more about 2020 NY Kurdish Film And Cultural Festival, we had an interview with Xeyal Qertel, The Founder and Director of the festival:

Cinema Without Borders: Please tell us about 2020 Festival, will it be online
Xeyal Qertel: Our fourth annual New York Kurdish Film and Cultural Festival will be held online due to the novel coronavirus pandemic and its effects. The festival features films, live events, talks, dance, music, and poetry around the chosen theme. This year’s theme is the Kurdish national unity and peace. To support and contribute to our theme, we chose films from four parts of Kurdistan. In addition, we are utilizing our festival to raise awareness of the Kurdish political prisoners, and asking for their freedom. And to do so, Mrs. Basak Demirtas will read her husband, Mr. Selahattin Demirtas’ message from behind bars. Mrs. Demirtas’ talk will be followed by the opening night film, Ah Asuman is based on the book of Selahattin Demirtas, a Kurdish political leader, lawyer, and human rights defender. Mr. Demirtas was the co-chair of the second largest opening party, HDP (People’s Democratic Party) in Turkey and was arrested in Nov 2016. He has been accused of committing hundreds of crimes, yet none of them being proved by Turkey’s judicial system. The mentioned book, Dawn was published in Sarah Jessica Parker’s imprint SJP for Hogarth Press.

CWB: What are the films that we have to look for, are there any US primaries?
XQ: There will be forty films from four parts of Kurdistan to support our theme and celebrate our fourth anniversary. In Kurdish culture, forty is significant. Most of these films will have their US primaries in our festival including the opening night film Ah Asuman. The following film Pace will also have a US primary. Pace is evolved around prison and the secret communication between two women prisoners. The director, Rezzan Bayram is a promising young Kurdish director. Also during the opening night, we will be hosting Mr. Ferhat Encu, a former parliamentary deputy of HDP. Mr. Encu’s talk title is “Struggle For Justice, Roboski Massacre.” His talk will be followed by a documentary film about the mentioned massacre, Roboski…

CWB: what are the genres of the films screened at the festival
Similar to previous years, the festival features both short and featured films. In addition to our usual genres of the films, this year, we will be screening animation.

CWB: How audiences could watch the films?
XQ: We will be using Vimeo professional platform to stream the films. We have three unique and secure links for each day. The ticket holders will receive one secure link for each day to enjoy the festival. The tickets are available at https://eventbrite.com/e/122849591435 and at our website: www.nykfcf.com
The tickets are priced per day: $10, and we are offering a deal: three days festival tickets: $25.

CWB: How many days will the Festival run?
XQ: Like previous years, this year’s festival will be celebrated for three days, Friday, November 13 through Sunday, 15th.

CWB: Are there any Q&As?
XQ: Yes, there will be live Q&A sessions. The ticket holders will be able to ask questions.

Xeyal Qertel is an educator and human rights defender. She is from Bakuri Kurdistan and residing in New York City.


About Author

Bijan Tehrani

Bijan Tehrani a film director, film critic and writer, works as editor in chief of Cinema Without Borders while teaching Language of Film and Film History at workshops nationwide. Bijan has won several awards in international film festivals and book fairs for his short films and children's books.

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