Dounia & la Princesse d’Alep
Dounia & The Princess of Aleppo
Marya Zarif, André Kadi
Aleppo is a city full of secrets and wonders, and home to six-year-old Dounia. She loves the vibrant atmosphere in the streets and alleyways, but she also has to deal with some tragic strokes of fate. Her mother Leyla died so young that Dounia can barely remember her. One day, her father is arrested by soldiers and taken away. Dounia is brought up by her grandparents, who indulge her with food, music and love. But when war breaks out in Syria and life in Aleppo becomes too dangerous, Dounia is forced to flee – accompanied by her grandparents and a special magic power. The three set out on a perilous journey in search of a new home, which is waiting for them somewhere, Dounia is sure. Dounia & the Princess of Aleppo combines the magical quality of a fairy tale with the harsh reality of flight and displacement. The story is propelled by Dounia’s unshakeable optimism and the film’s generally upbeat tone, which appears to defy all problems and obstacles. Based on her own memories of childhood, director ##Marya Zarif## first produced a graphic novel which then turned into a six-part series and subsequently her animated debut feature film which she directed together with musician and producer André Kadi.
In collaboration with Cinepänz.
Marya Zarif Marya Zarif brings to the screen part of her own life story in her feature film debut. Born and brought up in Aleppo, she now lives in Canada, where she works as a conceptual artist and author. With the foundation Je veux jouer, she also campaigns for the construction of children’s playgrounds in refugee camps.
André Kadi is an author, musician and co-founder of the production companies Du Coup Animation and Du Coup Production. Dounia and the Princess of Aleppo is Kadi’s feature film debut.