PODCAST| Matt Micucci interviews Christy Garland, director of the film What Walaa Wants.
To listen to the interview, click on the ► icon on the right, just above the picture
An interview with Christy Garland, director of What Walaa Wants, screened at the 2019 One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival in Prague, Czech Republic. The film talks about a young Palestinian girl, Walaa, who decides to join the Palestinian Civil Police Force, and Garland followed her journey for five years. In this interview, the director talks with us about her interest in this particular topic and story, about Walaa’s reaction to her making a film about her, the universal appeal of the story and also some of the challenges that she had to overcome during filming.
What Walaa Wants: For 5 years Christy Garland filmed a young woman who was dealt a bad hand at the start – born in a Palestinian refugee camp, abandoned by her father and with her mother in prison until Walaa was 15. It’s no surprise that she grew up to be a rebel with a complicated relationship with the authorities. Nonetheless, or maybe because of this, she decided to join the Palestinian Civil Police Force. She learned to respect rules, to endure extreme physical hardship and, most importantly, to fight for her ideals. The film not only provides a unique testimony about a unique heroine – a young Palestinian feminist – but also shows how the Palestinian “police academy” functions in all shades of its rigour.