For the past few months, I have been working on a short film. It’s not my first time making a short film, but the first time I am determined to produce a high-quality project, utilising everything I’ve studied in university and volunteer experience.
At the moment, the short film is called Nur and about a young Australian Muslim girl of the same name. It’s quite a simple film with less focus on narrative but more on the exploration of Nur’s thoughts, including her perception of the world, of her position in it, and of her identity.
I got the idea for this short film about five months ago after an islamic discussion. I just went home, turned on my Mac and typed down everything in my head. A few days later, I re-read what I had written, and realised that a visual project was possible.
I was quite nervous and anxious, because although I have had many ideas and plans for videos and short films before, I have never had the motivation to concetualise and pursue them till the end. However, for some reasons, I felt really committed with this project. I want to produce the film not because I want to make differences or challenge stereotypes of Muslims, or educate people about Islam. When I started, I simply wanted to express what I want say, to transform abstract thoughts in my head into something concrete and comprehensible, and thus to make them more sharable.
Ahamdulilah God made things easy for me. Nurun, who I have always wanted to play Nur, agreed to collaborate soon after I sent her the script, and generally everything went well despite some minor challenges. I am really grateful to Nurun for her commitment, including her willingness to accompany me for the whole day during Ramadan – when both she and I were exhausted because of hunger, freezing weather and lack of sleep. Ahamdulilah that I had such an awesome and enthusiastic partner to work with, that my friends were very supportive, and that my work experiences with Meld Magazine and ABC have given me valuable skills in shooting and video editing.
Although I have not finished editing the film, I have completed most of it. Today when I watched the most recent draft version, ecstasy, excitement and elation overwhelmed my heart, as I realised that the film begins to look like what I expected. I felt a great sense of gratitude that I could even reach this state, especially after many delays, cancellations and debacles. The fact that God allows me to start this project, I realise, is itself a miracle, a invaluable gift.
Ahamdulilah for all of this to happen. I will try my best.