After Spring, the critically praised documentary about the Zaatari Syrian refugee camp, executive produced by Jon Stewart and Chris McShane, will debut Friday, February 10 at 9 PM on Starz. The film is available beginning today for Starz subscribers on the Starz app and Starz On Demand.
Directed/produced by Steph Ching (Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon) and Ellen Martinez (Tested), the documentary film tells the heartbreaking and inspiring personal stories of Syrian refugees and aid workers at the Zaatari Refugee Camp, home to 80,000 people and now considered the fourth largest city in Jordan. More than 50 percent of the camp’s population is under 18 years old and over 5,000 babies have been born in the camp since it opened in July 2012. After Spring is the story of what happens next. By following two refugee families in transition and some of the aid workers fighting to keep the camp running, viewers will experience what it is like to live in Zaatari, the largest camp for Syrian refugees. With no end in sight for the conflict or this refugee crisis, its residents must decide if they can rebuild their lives in a place that was never meant to be permanent.
The Starz debut is particularly timely, coming on the heels of President Donald Trump’s temporary denial of U.S. entry to people from seven primarily Muslim countries, including Syria, which is under an indefinite ban. The film made its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival and won the Audience Award at the New Orleans Film Festival 2016.
“We’ve all seen the hyperbole and the polemics, and the propaganda about who these refugees are and what these camps are and to see it in its most stark human, objective form is beautiful,” said Stewart. “[Filmmakers] Steph and Ellen found a way to tell the story of the camp, to provide some context for the families’ stories in a beautiful, real and unobtrusive way that is particularly moving and urgent.”
“When we started working on this film three years ago, our goal was to put a human face to the Syrian refugee crisis. Unfortunately, the need for empathy and understanding has never been more urgent,” said the filmmakers. “Today the Syrian refugee resettlement program has been suspended in the United States. We implore everyone to watch this film and spend some time with these two families who are affected by war and are now seeking safety. Every day we were so inspired by their hope, humor and resilience, and are incredibly grateful for their trust in welcoming us into their lives. We are so honored to help share their story with a wider audience, and hope that someday soon, we can return the favor, and refugees will again be welcome in the United States.”
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