One-on-one with filmmaker Ahmad Alyaseer on his powerful short 'Our Males and Females', and more.
Ahmad Alyaseer is a Jordanian director, producer and writer. He recently directed the Emmy Award nominated kids show (Ahlan Simsim - Sesame Workshop). His Sci-Fi experimental feature (When Time Becomes a Woman, 2012) was screened at various film festivals including Boston Sci-Fi Film Festival. Ahmad is developing his feature (To Him We Return) which received development support and has been selected at several labs and workshops. Additionally, Ahmad has more than nine years of experience directing and producing TV series for regional platforms including Shahid, VIU and MBC.
iFilmFestival: Tell us a bit about your most important film so far.
AA: “'Our Males and Females' is by far the closest film/project to my heart, it has a special place there. It was done with passion from its early development stages all the way to the festivals submissions.”
iFilmFestival: What were the key challenges making it?
AA: “We couldn't secure any funds and many key role members in the film refused to work on it for its bold and controversial topic. I ended up fully self-funding the film.”
iFilmFestival: What’s one aspect that you’re particularly proud of?
AA: “Everything, honestly, this might be the only project I have completed where I genuinely believe it was executed exactly as it should have been, and I wouldn't have done anything differently.”
iFilmFestival: How did you get involved in filmmaking?
AA: “It started by simply watching films and analyzing them. I was during my fifth grade, and then I realized I wanted this to be my career.”
Trailer: Our Males and Females (2023)
iFilmFestival: What new projects are you working on or are you hoping to work on in the future?
AA: “I have two feature films in development, one of them is based on the short film. I'm also writing a TV series.”
iFilmFestival: What role do film festivals play?
AA: “Film festivals play a pivotal role in the life of a filmmaker. Submitting a film to festivals and receiving confirmation of its selection is an incredibly exhilarating experience, filling me with immense joy and excitement. The reason behind this profound thrill lies in the fact that our story is not only being watched but also acknowledged. The feeling that our narrative will be showcased to an audience and that our voice will be heard is simply unparalleled. It ignites a sense of purpose, affirming that our creative endeavors have the potential to connect with and impact others. The recognition gained through film festivals encourage us to continue pursuing our passion and storytelling dreams.”
iFilmFestival: What is your advice to filmmakers tackling the festival circuit?
AA: “Make sure you have a good film and you are proud of, once you do that, don't worry about the festivals that will pick you, eventually, your film will be seen and recognized, regardless of the amount of festivals that rejected it.”
iFilmFestival: How do you see the future of film?
AA: “The future of film is changing. Independent films face challenges competing with big blockbusters and sequels, and online platforms are increasing the demand for TV shows over films. However, this shift doesn't have to be scary. It presents an opportunity for smart adaptation. Filmmakers need to embrace new distribution models, leverage digital platforms, and explore diverse storytelling formats. While the industry transforms, storytelling will always be at the core. By embracing change and seizing emerging opportunities, we can shape a future of film filled with endless creative possibilities.”
iFilmFestival: Which filmmaker do you admire and why?
AA: “James Cameron! He is a GENIUS. I love how he is able to explore and invent new technologies. And how he never fails at the Box Office, he knows the audience too well.”
iFilmFestival: What film have you recently seen that you have admired in one way or another?
AA: “'Another Round' and 'Sound of Metal'. Two masterpieces that I enjoyed every second of them.”
iFilmFestival: Thank you Ahmad for answering our questions!
Interview by iFilmFestival on 17/7/2023.