Kartemquin's Joanna Rudnick is filming in Qatar for her current production, On Beauty. We wanted to share her latest dispatch from the Middle East:

Friday, March 12, 2010

In the early morning sunshine, our cameraman Chris Booker jumped on a skateboard and chased the seven-year-old Ghanem, who is missing much of his back bone and has no use of his undeveloped legs , as he skated on his own board whizzing past onlookers in awe. This was followed up by a group of medical students at Weil Cornell Medical College in Doha all riding bikes, skateboards, and little makeshift "cars" in front of the medical school building as Ghanem (which translates to "the winner" in Arabic) and his twin brother Achmed raced each other in the middle. Ghanem's mother even got into a dune buggy and sped off in her abaya and hijab with Chris behind her in motion. A very different picture of the Middle East and of "disability."

 

Joanna Rudnick's previous film as director, In the Family, screens at Northwestern University-Qatar on March 16th. Get more information.