An interview with Basil Khalil about his film AVE MARIA and winning HP BRIDGING THE BORDERS AWARD at 2015 Palm Springs ShortFest


On June 21, 2015—Palm Springs International Short Film Festival and Market named Ave Maria (Palestine), directed by Basil Khalil, as the winner of HP’s 2015 Bridging the Borders Award, presented by Cinema Without Borders.

Unfortunately Basil could not attend the award ceremony and just two days ago, on August 1st, Liisi Rohumäe, AVE MARIA’s script consultant received the HP Bridging The Borders Award diploma and prize system (HP ZBook 15 Mobile Workstation. An approximate $3000 value) on behalf of film director Basil Khalil.

Mr. Khalil in a note to Cinema Without Borders wrote:
““I would like to thank HP and Cinema Without Borders for this award that puts films with a strong message into the spotlight. One of the main reasons behind wars and violence in this world is the lack of empathy towards the other. Over the years one of the few things that has bridged borders between “sworn enemies” was art, music and cinema. This HP computer will be put to great use in helping me create future cinematic projects, therefore thanks for encouraging us to continue in this path.”

Ave Maria
Palestinian, 2015, 14 Minute Running Time
Additional Countries: France, Germany
North American Premiere

A Jewish family’s car breaks down outside a nunnery during Shabat, inadvertently knocking off the head of the Virgin Mary. The driver’s mother and wife are eager to return home. After exhausting all options they turn to the nuns for help.

DIRECTOR: Basil Khalil
Producer: Eric Dupont
Editor: Basil Khalil
Screenwriter: Daniel Yáñez Khalil, Basil Khalil
Cinematographer: Eric Mizrahi
Music: Jamie Serafi
Principal Cast: Maria Zreik, Maya Koren, Huda Al-Imam, Shady Srour, Ruth Farhi


About Author

Luz Aguado

Luz Aguado was born in Guanajuato, Mexico and grew up in East Los Angeles. She is the oldest of four siblings. Prior to attending The Art Institute, Luz was a student at the University of California Riverside where she studied biology and aspired to become a medical doctor. Now she studies Media Arts and Animation at The Art Institute of Los Angeles and hopes of one day having the opportunity to work for Disney Animation Studios. Three dimensional animation and the innovative techniques that have given animation a more realistic appearance is something that she wishes to focus on while at The Art Institute.

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