As if enduring the harsh and oppressive life facing all Tunisian women wasn't overwhelming enough, the shattering of Salma's marriage into divorce weighs on her like the death of hope resurrected with the fall of the Arab Spring.
Forever giving and self-sacrificing, she's struggling to hold on to what remains of her broken family in the only way she knows how, by burying herself in her work as a paramedic and escaping into other people's tragedy and pain.
Mourad, Salma's teenage son, has become all but consumed by feelings of helplessness, confusion, and abandonment as his family disintegrates. He so desperately needs to belong to someone. Or something. So much so, when the spawns of the dark force known as ISIS ensnare him into their jihadi brotherhood like some wild hoard of hungry beasts catching scent of a wounded prey, they only need lure him in with promises of eternal friendship and the power to change his crumbling world.
Now alone, Salma must summon all her strength and course she has left in order to save her son from a fate worse than death. She sets off on a hazardous journey into the very heart of darkness itself, ISIS' stronghold in the war-ravaged inferno known as the Syrian city of Aleppo, where they've taken her beloved Mourad for indoctrination into their cult of psychopathic fundamentalism and training in their bloodthirsty methods of persuasion.
Renowned astrophysicist ProfessorJeanine Markham dares to draw upon her mathematical genius to prove there is no God, that all of creation is solely based upon the pure and rational scientific phenomena of "self-existence". Her risky pursuit is a life-shattering endeavor, one that her family, friends, students and employer at the religious university where she works, refuse to accept. When she's secretly and mysteriously presented with unpublished research providing the very scientific clues and missing links guiding her towards irrefutable proof of the origin of all things, Jeanine unwittingly finds herself a pawn of the most evil force imaginable.
Directed by Ziad Hamzeh, Executive Producer and Screenplay by Richard Castellane, Produced by Ziad Hamzeh & Rob Draper
In March 2004, acclaimed Tunisian filmmaker Ridha Behi meets with Marlon Brando at Brando's home on Mulholland Drive and tells him of his desire to make a feature film inspired by the legendary actor. Deathly ill, the eighty-year-old is enthralled with Behi's story and agrees to collaborate with him in what he knows will be his very last movie.
Brando adds his unique perspective to Behi's screenplay and decides to perform a role in the film he feels will be the crowning achievement of his career - playing himself, Marlon Brando. The movie, then titled "Brando and Brando", is announced at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival.
But months later Brando's health fails. He dies. And Brando and Behi’s production comes to an abrupt halt. Over the ensuing years Behi re-writes the screenplay into a meditation on his journey with Brando, weaving documentary footage and scenes from Brando's vast film archive within a fictional narrative that finally brings their vision to completion.
Kickboxer Simon Penn’s merciless win-at-any-cost tactics fed his bloodlust and desperate need to be a champion. But now past his prime, he's awakened to the waste of his violent past and the carnage he's left in its wake. Struggling to redeem his shattered life, he's returned home to win back his one true love, the wife he abandoned for his dream of becoming a fighting hero.
In the martial arts school he's built with CJ Keyes, a young female kickboxer, Penn teaches the lessons of his baptism by fire. Kindred spirits, she becomes blinded by her hunger to be the best in the world, not just women's best but the best, and she convinces Penn to help her go professional in the full-contact fighting arena. But doing so brings on a deadly twist of fate and an old score unsettled.
It's a balancing act on a razor’s edge between Penn’s old life and his new. And the tragic price offered up this time comes at the highest of human costs.
Directed by Ziad Hamzeh, Executive Producer Paul Harron Jr., Produced by Ziad Hamzeh, Bert Brown, Marc Sandler, Screenplay by Marc Sandler
The harrowing story of an incredible odyssey captured by Pulitzer Prize nominated undercover reporter Dominique C. Mollard as he casts off from West Africa in a leaky fishing canoe with thirty-eight African migrants, among them a five-month-old baby, on their death-defying quest to reach a new life on the golden shores of Europe.
Adrift: People of a Lesser God captures the struggles of these desperate migrants as they brave their way across the cold Atlantic, all of them risking their lives in the hope for a better future.
Directed by Dominique C. Mollard, Produced by Ziad Hamzeh
Winner: Jury Prize for Editing - The Punta del Este International Documentary and Fiction Festival
THE LETTER: An American Town And The Somali Invasion
In the wake of the 9/11 tragedy a firestorm erupts when Mayor Larry Ramond of Lewiston, Maine sends an open letter to 1,100 newly arrived Somali refugees advising them that the city's resources are strained to the limit and asking other Somalis not to move to the city. Interpreted as a rallying cry by white supremacist groups across the United States, The Letter documents the crossfire of emotions and events, culminating in a hate rally convened by the World Church of the Creator versus a counter peace rally involving 4,000 Lewiston residents supporting ethnic and cultural diversity.
Written and Directed by Ziad Hamzeh, Executive Producer Paul Harron Jr., Produced by Ziad Hamzeh, Bert Brown, Marc Sandler
Available on Netflix; Distributed Worldwide by AFD
Against the oppressive environment of religious fanaticism, political turmoil, archaic traditions, and the rise of radical Islamic movements igniting incendiary Islamophobia, one extraordinary Arabian woman rises up in a personal, revealing, and dangerous quest to champion justice and equality for all women.
Shot entirely in Syria, this is the life of Nobel Prize nominee and activist Bouthaina Shaaban who fearlessly champions the cause of freedom for Arab women everywhere, from securing formal acknowledgements throughout the Arab world that women should be afforded basic human rights, to waging an international battle defending the integrity of the true Arab female, Bouthaina's enlightened path empowers the souls of those without a voice, invoking the strengths of the courageous and shedding light onto those whose hearts remain in darkness.
Written and Directed by by Ziad Hamzeh, Produced by Ziad Hamzeh, Bert Brown, Marc Sandler, Nina Cullen-Hamzeh
The Golden Palm Award - The Beverly Hills Film Festival; Special Selection Screening - Damascus International Film Festival; European Premiere - Mid-Ulster Film Festival
This is the remarkable and inspiring story of Spanish-language color commentator for the Tampa Bay Devil Ray’s Enrique "Henry" Oliu, a man blind since birth, he hears the crack of the bat and knows if it’s a single, double, or homerun; he listens for the ball singing into the catcher’s mitt and knows if it’s a curveball, fastball, or change-up.
Henry has overcome all the odds and made his major league baseball dream come true by achieving the impossible – he calls a game he’s never seen.
Written and Directed by Ziad Hamzeh, Executive Producer R. Becker Edison, Produced by Karen Hunter and Ziad Hamzeh
"The pitch on the way. It's a long drive into center field! It's way back! Way back! It could be! It might be! It is! A home run! Holy cow! The fans are streaming onto the field!"
They’re the storytellers of those warm summer nights for kids of all ages who never had the chance to get near a major league ballpark, but instead cradle radios against their ears to hear the calls of America’s favorite pastime – baseball.
PlayByPlayMen is devoted to those radio broadcasters who dedicate their lives to making that perfect call. Sit beside them in the press box for an insider’s look at the art and craft of the play-by-play, called by some of the most well-known baseball announcers of all time.
Peppered with audio clips of some of the most famous play-by-play calls ever heard in baseball, it's a grand slam for every fan of the game, past, present, and future.
Written and Directed by Ziad Hamzeh, Produced by Karen Hunter and Ziad Hamzeh
This is a story of five men who shared a common dream as boys, the dream of growing up and playing major league baseball. Five men, each of whose dreams were dashed at an early age due to blindness. Their inspiring stories unfold in chapters like the innings of a baseball game with them sitting in the bleachers watching the action. All are courageous. All are endearing. All are masterful storytellers.
Written and Directed by Ziad Hamzeh, Executive Producer R. Becker Edision, Produced by Karen Hunter and Ziad Hamzeh