Farah Nabulsi is a Palestinian British Oscar-nominated and BAFTA-nominated filmmaker and human rights advocate.
She is the daughter of Palestinians who were fortunate enough to make a home in 1970's Britain — unlike the millions who continue to remain stateless in refugee camps.
Born, raised and educated in London, Farah began her career as an institutional equity stockbroker. She ended up with a CFA designation at JP Morgan Chase before moving on to build a children-focused business that she ran for 10 years.
In 2015, she started working in the film industry.
She founded a production company through which she writes, produces and directs fiction films, exploring topics that matter to her and she created a digital resource to deconstruct the Israeli military occupation of Palestine in a way never done before.
Farah writes, directs and produces fiction films inspired by Palestinian realities.
Her latest short film The Present, which is both Oscar-nominated and BAFTA-nominated, sheds light on how Palestinians are deprived of the basic right to freedom of movement. Starring renowned actor Saleh Bakri, it won the Audience Award for Best Film at Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival 2020 (World premiere), the Jury Award for Best Live Action Short at the Cleveland International Film Festival (North American premiere), and has since gone on to win upwards of 25 Audience and Jury Awards at numerous International film festivals as well as being licensed to Canal+ (France), Pacific Voice (Japan), Telefonica (Spain) and Netflix (Global).
In her words: "The arts play a crucial role in changing the world and I believe film precedes them all. It gives voice to the silenced, thereby helping build the empathy and understanding needed to effect change."
Her films have been officially selected to international film festivals around the world and her novel approach has been endorsed by the likes of Noam Chomsky, Hanan Ashrawi, John Pilger, Ken Loach and others.
Farah is currently working on her first feature-length film.
On his wedding anniversary, Yusef and his young daughter set out in the West Bank to buy his wife a gift. Between soldiers, segregated roads and checkpoints, how easy would it be to go shopping?
A haunting, abstract and experimental narrative of a woman in the streets of Gaza surrounded by the devastation after the bombs have stopped. She has been helping others, but revelations show it is she who now needs help.
Roger Waters Musician, Composer, Co-Founder of Pink Floyd
The film, Nightmare of Gaza, is poetic and powerful.
Gideon Levy Award-Winning Israeli Journalist & Author
Gaza is unfortunately not a nightmare. Gaza is a horrifying reality. Farah Nabulsi’s short film, Nightmare of Gaza, presents that reality in an artistic way and reminds all of us of the ongoing tragedy. Nobody can remain indifferent to the voices and images in this film. Nobody should remain indifferent to the fate of Gaza.
Sara Roy Jewish-American political economist and scholar
In this stunning and compelling film, Farah Nabulsi captures Gaza’s agony but also her soul. Gaza pleads, “Those who did this are so distant from what they did.” Yet, Nabulsi removes any distance between Gaza and those who insist on silencing her, arguing that Gaza will not be abandoned to indifference and indignity or denied her essential humanity. This beautifully rendered film demands that we maintain a living connection with Gaza's people, experiencing with them their suffering and also their promise. In so doing, said Edward Said, we “unearth the forgotten,” allowing us to embrace nearness over detachment and thereby reclaim our own humanity.
Alice Walker Multi-Award-Winning Novelist & Poet (The Color Purple)
It is, finally, the artist, who gives us back our sight, our soul, and so we see and feel what has happened in a place. Thank you, Farah Nabulsi.
A mother coping with her young son being taken away by a military system. Her helplessness to prevent the cruel and inhumane treatment she knows he is experiencing is more than any mother can bear.
John Pilger Multi-Award Winning Film Director & Journalist
Farah Nabulsi's extraordinary film is a landmark work. It touched me deeply and made me angry all over again about the horror of Israel and its treatment of the Palestinian people. It points a finger straight at the rest of us, whose governments support Israel, and demand that we speak up now, and never stop until Palestinians are free.
Ken Loach Multi-Award Winning Film Director
This is a brilliant film and demands to be seen. The story it tells is irrefutable, entirely justified – the evidence is there for all who are not blinded by prejudice. Television companies should be fighting each other to show this. If you care about nothing else, care about Palestinian children. You don't know what's going on? Then watch this film and I dare you to turn your back.
Dr Hanan Ashrawi Palestinian Legislator, Spokeswoman, Academic
I'm deeply touched and moved beyond words! The familiarity of recurrent pain only makes it all that more intolerable. Farah's film made me sob with all other mothers, grandmothers, children, human beings who are overwhelmed by the casualness of such horrific injustice and persistence of such willful cruelty. Her revelation of the simple Palestinian story is so personal, so human, so stark that its intensity becomes unbearable. The aesthetic of immersion left me breathless and silent.
Noam Chomsky Jewish-American Author & Institute Professor (Emeritus) of MIT University
American law bars aid to military forces that engage in systematic rights abuses. This heartbreaking film, and the brutal reality of which it is a tiny sample, tell us loud and clear that the law should be enforced and military aid to Israel should end as long as the criminal occupation is maintained.
Sarah Leah Whitson Director of Human Rights Watch, MENA
Today They Took My Son covers a very important topic and an area that Human Rights Watch has spent a great deal of time documenting, so it’s great to see the issue taken up in a way that people can relate to on a personal level. The imagery is great, in particular contrasting the real photographs of detained kids with the fictionalized narrative in the film, and the flashbacks between the documentary footage and the narrative recreated is also effective.
For decades, a gross injustice has been perpetuated against an entire people. Through consumption of news media, we think we understand what they are going through. But we have no idea.
Dr Hanan Ashrawi Palestinian Legislator, Spokeswoman, Academic
I heard and I watched and I’m deeply moved—touched to the core. The word, the image, the idea, and the emotion are all so compelling and genuine.
Jonathan Cook Award Winning Journalist
Very powerful and a great way to give people a sense that there is so much more they don’t know.
Noam Chomsky Jewish-American Author & Institute Professor (Emeritus) of MIT
The evocative and sensitive imagery of Oceans of Injustice vividly reminds us of the endless suffering endured by Palestinians and their courage and endurance in rising from despair.
Farah is an engaging and relatable speaker. She brings a down-to-earth artists perspective into the discourse that leaves audiences enlightened, energised and inspired.
In addition to the following topics, she can tailor her talks according to each event and each audience:
Speaking engagements have included: