October 13, 2015 1:29 pm
This past weekend, the Saving Mes Aynak team came home with the Best Documentary Award - International One-Hour Film Competition at the CinemAmbiente International Environmental Film Festival. The festival, in its 18th year, took place in Torino, Italy from October 6-11, 2015. CinemAmbiente serves as one of the leading environmental film festivals in the world. In awarding this prize, CinemAmbiente recognizes Saving Mes Aynak for its "balanced presentation and concise treatment of the political, cultural, human, social, and environmental issues in present day Afghanistan." Congratulations to the Saving Mes Aynak team and collaborators! You can catch the award-winning film this Saturday, October 17 at Yale University as part of the Yale Himalaya Initiative Series, followed by a discussion with Director and Northwestern University professor Brent Huffman. Find other Saving Mes Aynak events here or on their webpage.
Saving Mes Aynak follows Afghan archaeologist Qadir Temori as he races against time to save a 5,000-year-old archaeological site in Afghanistan from imminent demolition. A Chinese state-owned mining company is closing in on the ancient site, eager to harvest $100 billion dollars worth of copper buried directly beneath the archaeological ruins. Only 10% of Mes Aynak has been excavated, though, and some believe future discoveries at the site have the potential to redefine the history of Afghanistan and the history of Buddhism itself. Qadir Temori and his fellow Afghan archaeologists face what seems an impossible battle against the Chinese, the Taliban and local politics to save their cultural heritage from likely erasure.