Sunday, November 7, 2010

Failaka Video

In January of this year, To Rest in Peace went to Kuwait to shoot b-roll footage. Most of it was shot on the Island of Failaka, which was completely abandoned for twenty years after the Gulf.

As we were boarding the ferry back to Kuwait, we saw tow trucks arriving on the island. You might remember this story from the January post, "News from Kuwait". They were there to remove the abandoned cars, in preparation for a complete demolition of the neighbourhood.

We were haunted by the realization that the footage we had was the last visual record of this moment of history, frozen for twenty years.

With that in mind, I decided to make this video. Some of the unused footage of Failaka is intercut here with the song "Salamun Salam" from To Rest in Peace, which is nominated for Best World Music Track at the Hollywood Music in Media Awards (in a couple of weeks!)

The footage was color corrected by Sean Conaty.


  1. Oh, now I wish I had gone back in 2008 one more time to shoot more photos :(

    'Beautiful' footage though and glad there's some last reminders of what it looked like for 20 years!

  2. Well done Fawaz, great work as usual.

  3. Yea Fawaz, the footage is beautiful. It makes you wonder, though. Congrats on all the success!

  4. Nicole - I love the photo you have of the soldier's helmet on the cross. Very haunting.

    For anyone else interested, you can see it here:

    I wonder how much of the neighbourhood is gone already? When we were leaving in January, they were bringing in tow trucks to remove the cars, and bulldozers to start demolition. But they might still be working at it. It's a big place! I'll be curious to see what the redevelopment plan is.

    Moayad - thank you! And thank you for the beautiful message on Vimeo. I'll respond to it there.

    Mahmoud - thank you too! It's been too long. Hope to see you when I'm in Toronto next, or you're in LA.

  5. Guess I will have to head on over some time this month. No way around it :-)

    Since I already missed to take photos of the satellite dishes while they were still there :-(

  6. That would be great! Let me know what you find!