Kamal has a dream: he wants to fly. But many say paragliding is an impossible dream for a man in a wheelchair.
FILMS ARE OUR WINDOWS
> Despite the title of your film, the “flying” part only appears in the last part of the movie. Why did choose this title?
Flying is impossible for humans, you know, so we have invented all of this complicated machines to be able to fly: we’ve invented planes, of course, but also parachutes and paragliding, etc, which are closer to the actual thing.
Problem is, for a disabled person, this kind of activities would seem impossible. Yet the protagonist of my short film does them, as he does many other things that would also seem impossible, at first, but they are not – so for me, flying is a good metaphor for his life, even if the flying part itself is not so important, because what is really amazing about him is that he does all of these impossible things in a daily basis because he wants to do it.
> Do you think it’s important for short films to make us closer to those that are different, like disabled people, for example?
Well, for me, the short answer is “yes”, of course. But the more complex answer is that, you know, I obviously can’t speak for other filmmakers. For me, to make a short movie, I have to be inspired – and let’s be real, there are a lot of disabled people that might have interesting stories, but they may not be so “filmmable”, or they haven’t met a filmmaker yet, etc.
So I think it’s a little bit more complicated. I can only wish that others filmmakers may have the opportunity to discover all of the inspiring stories that disabled people have in themselves.
> Do you think it’s important for cinema to open our minds to other spaces?
Most people, for many different reasons, can’t just take off, and travel, and go wherever they want. For example, I‘ve always been really interested in going to India, but, you know, I have two kids now, so I know I will definitely not go to India, haha. But when I watch a movie about it, I get to live a little bit vicariously, I get to imagine how it would feel to be there.
Azerbaijan, for example, is not on anybody’s bucket list: everybody wants to visit the south of France, or Madrid, etc. If you’re a kid, you want to go to Disneyland. But there are many places with a lot of amazing experiences to offer, and stories to tell, that nobody cares for, initially.
But films can open our minds to these places – films can be our windows to these worlds. And, who knows, maybe someone watches a film about these places, and it makes such an impression on them that they actually want to go. Everything is possible, you know. That’s what I wanted to say.
Maria is right now immersed in the production of four different projects -two films, two documentaries- while looking forward to directing more short films and making the jump to directing a full-length feature.