Cinema Center Preparing Global Vision to Reform Support for Documentary Films on Sahrawi Culture, Hassani History

The Moroccan Cinematographic Center (CCM) announced that it is preparing a global vision for the reform of the system of public support for documentary films on Saharawi culture, history and the Hassani space, instituted in 2015, given that the current system “no longer responds to the objectives set”. The jury of the 6th Documentary Film Festival on Saharawi culture, Hassani history and space (19-25 December in Laayoune), which screened 24 documentary films selected in the official competition and 11 others selected in the “Panorama” category, noted, during the discussions held by film critics after the screenings, “the low quality of the Hassan film industry, despite the financial resources allocated to it in the framework of public aid,” the MCC said in a statement. The same source cited the case of a documentary screened at the festival that showed “gross and reprehensible ignorance of a renowned historical figure of the southern region,” which represents “an intolerable lapse in the realm of the film industry, especially considering that a documentary film is supposed to stick to well-documented historical truths, instead of lapsing into fiction, as is the norm in other cinematic works.” The documentary in question had benefited from public aid for 2019 and its final version was submitted, in September 2021, to the scrutiny of the independent aid committee, of which a representative of Saharawi culture is a member, which validated its content without making any observations on the historical facts it relates, recalls the CCM. The Center expresses, in this regard, its “profound disapproval” and its “solemn condemnation” of this work in particular and “of any production which does not respect the historical constants and facts, as is the norm in documentary films, whatever the justifications put forward by their producers”.