American Arab to World Premiere at IDFA

Usama Alshaibi's American Arab will have its World Premiere at IDFA (International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam), the world's largest documentary film festival. Our acclaimed film The Trials of Muhammad Ali will also play at IDFA, in its European Premiere. Usama Alshaibi and The Trials of Muhammad Ali director Bill Siegel will attend the festival, as will Gordon Quinn and Justine Nagan (executive producers on both films), and Kartemquin associate Dinesh Sabu (cinematographer on American Arab). Continued

Spring Showcase is Sold Out!

This Sunday, May 19, a lucky few Kartemquin fans will be in the audience giving their feedback on 4 of our new documentaries at the 2013 Kartemquin Spring Showcase. We are delighted to announce that this event is already sold out! The Chicago Sun-Times spoke to the filmmakers ahead of the event, noting that gathering "audience input" has always been a tenet of our production model. This year's showcase will feature premieres of footage from Cooked, Continued

Spring Showcase directors preview their sneak previews

Ahead of the 2013 Kartemquin Spring Showcase, the directors and producers involved have all recorded videos that offer a little preview discussion of the exclusive, world premiere sneak peeks they will be showing this Sunday, May 19, 5pm at Gene Siskel Film Center (get tickets). The event will offer the audience a forum for intimate discussion of the following works-in-progress: Cooked, The Homestretch, Mormon Movie, and American Arab. Continued

Kartemquin previews four new films at “Spring Showcase” at Gene Siskel Film Center May 19

Tickets are now on sale for the 2013 Kartemquin Spring Showcase! Enjoy exclusive previews of never-before-seen footage from four of our upcoming documentaries, and give your feedback directly to the filmmakers in the theater and in a post-screening reception. Serving as both a window into our process and an opportunity to impact the future of these works-in-progress, this annual event embodies the Kartemquin spirit of collaborative creation and meaningful audience engagement. Get tickets. Continued

Justine Nagan's Mid-Year Letter

Happy summer from our cozy Victorian headquarters on the northside of Chicago.  We are so happy to have air-conditioning.  Despite the heat, our staff and filmmakers are working harder than ever and I felt compelled to check in with you and tell you a bit about all that's going on at Kartemquin.  Last fall as we were celebrating our 45th anniversary, I thought it was going to be a hard year to beat.  Now, almost 6 full months into 2012, we're a buzz with several exciting events and initiatives in the works to share. FILMS Continued

Read Usama Alshaibi's "Forced Artist Statement"

"Motion unfixed, in flux, with no obvious resolution – this is an exciting place for me to explore. The notion of the immigrant, the sense of displaced citizen in transition, is becoming a contemporary reality for many of us. With real and imagined fears of global terrorism and an unstable economy, we are all, in a sense, experiencing a state of anxiety and transformation." Kartemquin's first Diversity Fellow, Usama Alshaibi, is getting close to completing his new documentary American Arab. Get to know him and his filmmaking philosophy better by reading his "Forced Artist Statement". Continued

Illinois Humanities Council funds American Arab

The Illinois Humanities Council has awarded a grant of $5,000 to in-progress Kartemquin Documentary American Arab.   Here is a statement from director/producer Usama Alshaibi and Associate Producer Tristan Hanson:   "Arab American is thrilled to announce a $5,000 grant from the Illinois Humanities Council in support of the project. We want to thank the Council for their vote of confidence, which has been a great boost to our spirits as we move full speed ahead with our 2012 fundraising efforts."  American Arab asks: "What does it mean to be an Arab living in America today?" and is currently in post-prdocution. You can help support the completion of the film by donating here. Continued