[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/48401582[/vimeo]

Asad is a 2012 South African-American short film directed by Bryan Buckley. It is a coming of age fable of a Somali boy as he struggles to survive in his war-torn land.

Produced in South Africa by Mino Jarjoura of Hungry Man Productions, the cast is made up of Somali refugees living in South Africa, none of whom had any acting experience prior to production.

The film was nominated for the 2012 Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film. Click HERE to watch Asad right now.

Writer/Director Bryan Buckley and Producer Mino Jarjoura were both guests of the annual Oscar Luncheon on Monday, February 4, 2013 for the nomination of Best Live Action Short for their short “ASAD”.The Academy Awards’ annual luncheon took place at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Stars such as Quvenzhané Wallis,  Hugh Jackman, Jessica Chastain and Robert De Niro were just some of the celebrities present at the affair. See photos from the event below.  The Academy Awards will take place on February 24th starting at 8:00PM ET / 7:00PM CT / 5:00PM PT.

Congrats to Bryan, Mino, Matt and the whole team who worked on ASAD!

Hey Bryan!

Here’s just a little video we made in NY for your OSCAR NOMINATION FOR ASAD. Congratulations to Bryan Buckley, Mino Jarjoura, Matt Lefebvre and hungry man!

[vimeo]https://vimeo.com/57159263[/vimeo]

bryan-bio-image

January 10th will forever go down as a momentous occasion in Hungry Man history. At around 5:35am pst Bryan Buckley’s short film, Asad, produced by Mino Jarjoura and Associately Produced by Matt Lefebvre, was nominated for an Academy Award.

The largest of Congratulations go out to Bryan, Mino, Matt and everyone else responsible for bringing this magnificent story to life.

Picture 12

Be sure to tune in on February 24th at 7pm est/4pm pst to watch the Hungry Man Men take the red carpet by storm (I’m going to take a stab in the dark and guess that Mr. Buckley will be the guy in the beanie).

Some fanfare from across the pond for  Bryan Buckley’s ASAD with the lovely folks from the UK publication DAVID REVIEWS .

For those of you who do not have subscriptions to the site you can read it below. Or if you do you can read it on the homepage of DAVID REVIEWS where it is currently being showcased.

 

ASAD

 

DAVID REVIEWS

Hungryman director Bryan Buckley has achieved huge success at festivals around the world with his short film Asad.

The film – which was also written by Buckley – takes place in a war-torn fishing village in Somalia where a boy must decide between life as a pirate or as an honest fisherman.

Buckley’s decision to make this movie with an all-Somali refugee cast was inspired by his experiences shooting ‘No Autographs’ during the summer of 2010. Buckley, along with producer Mino Jarjoura, travelled with the United Nations to Kenya and Sudan and while filming in the Kakuma Refugee Camp, he interviewed many Somali refugees and was both fascinated by their spirit and moved by their struggles.

A year later, Buckley wrote and directed ASAD.

After premièring at the Tribeca Film Festival in April of this year, Asad won the prize for ‘Best Narrative Short’ and became eligible for an Academy Award nomination.

Asad then travelled west to the LA Film Festival and won the Audience Award for Best Short before being named by Indiewire as one of ‘The Five Hottest Short Films of the Summer’.

The film screened at the Rhode Island International Film Festival (RIIFF) where it was awarded the Grand Prize for Best Short and became RIIFF’s official representative to the Academy in hopes of a nomination.

The film was further honoured when Michael Moore personally selected Asad for the Traverse City Film Festival where it won the Special Jury Prize.

The film festival circuit is far from over for ASAD… it will appear around the world over the next nine months and – in the next few months – there’s the possibility that it will be garlanded with an Oscar.

Go Bryan.

 

We agree with you David- Go Bryan!!

There’s been a lot of  buzz around Bryan Buckley’s Oscar shortlisted short film (try saying that 3 x fast) ASAD and online magazine SHOTS has featured Bryan Buckley in an interview on his experiences working on the film.

Take a look here at the site, or if you don’t have a login I’ve just copied and pasted the article below.

Bryan Buckley Talks Asad and Academy Awards

10th December 2012

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fq6aJ7_8tcc[/youtube]

 

Hungry Man director Bryan Buckley has seen his short film, Asad (a clip of which can be viewed above), pick up a host of prizes at a variety of films festivals over the course of 2012 and has recently found out that it has been shortlisted for what most would consider to be the daddy of film awards, the Oscars.


Here Buckley discusses the genesis of his film and how filming a documentary helped him make the decision to shoot Asad. He also talks about the difficulties in getting the film made, casting non-English speaking, non-actors and how feature films are beckoning.

How and why did this come about and what, if any, relationship do you already have with Somalia?

Well, two years ago we shot a short documentary for UNHCR on refugee camp crisis with NBA star and England’s Olympian Luol Deng. Luol was a lost boy of Sudan. He was born in Sudan and we documented his arrival back into his homeland for the first time since he and his family fled during the civil war during the late 90s. The first stop for Luol would be in Northern Kenya at a refugee camp called Kakuma.  My producer, Mino Jarjoura, and cameraman Scott Henriksen and I arrived there first and waited for Luol to arrive.

During those days we conducted interview after interview with the refugees who were stuck there. Many of these refugees were new arrivals from Somalia due to famine and brutal attacks by the Shabaab. We just started getting to hear all the stories about what was going on in their country. It didn’t take long for me to realise that there’s a lot that the media wasn’t explaining or helping us understand about the plight of these people. Nor were they capturing their spirit.

About a year passed after we had finished our documentary, unfortunately few people saw it, but the stories haunted me. The human condition in Somalia had continued to deteriorate. One weekend in July 2011, I was reading a story in the New York Times on the famine hitting the country and the inability for UN to get relief into the country due to rebel fighting and it pushed me over the edge. And I put down what I was doing and began to write Asad. It took me two days. It came fast.

Did you shoot the film in Somalia or was it too dangerous?

No, it was way too dangerous in Somalia so we took it to CapeTown to shoot. In Cape Town we went to a community formed by Somalia refugees and recruited people who would be interested in the project. There were no actors there, just people trying to survive.

So, you wrote the film as well?

Yes, I wrote it. And then we translated the whole thing; once we’d translated it, the two boys who were our main leads had to memorise every word. They had never been to school in their lives, and were completely illiterate. I mean completely. It was a huge undertaking.  The two boys we cast to play Asad (the main character) and Ali (his young friend) are actually brothers and they had only been in South Africa for a couple of months. Their real names are Harun, and Ali Mohammed.

Harun, was 12 at the time and I originally was going to cast them the other way round but it was quite clear that, at 10, Ali was too young to do the part with all the memorisation that was needed. After we finished shooting I learned from the boys’ dad that the boys couldn’t attend South African schools because they were considered too old for their programme. They just weren’t set up to handle two Somalia boys who couldn’t read. So with the help of my associate producer Matt Lefebvre we set the boys up with a special private school. It took us awhile to find the teachers. But by March we got the programme up and running.  We were back down in CapeTown in September and we saw the boys. They are doing amazing now. And have already reached thefourth grade level of reading English.

So, essentially the jumping off point for the short film was to bring to a wider audience the plight of refugees, especially Somali refugees?

Yes. Somali people have an incredible spirit. It came through in every interview we did in Kakuma. A film needed to capture this. Our exposure in the western world of Somalia is from CNN and BBC clips of pirates and famine. Clips don’t capture spirit.

Had you shot a short fiction film before?

Yes, I did a short, I did a couple of shorts, but nothing where I’ve sat there and said, “Okay, we’ll look at this thing as a bigger mission”. And that’s the difference this time.

How hard was it directing people who couldn’t understand what you were saying?

There were layers of challenges. You’re going into a world that you don’t know; you do your Google searches, you check stuff out, but you are still entering into an entirely different world, but you have to accurately depict the culture. So, yes, there was a tremendous amount of research that went into it all, but then you were dealing with the people you had to really listen to what they said, or how they would react or how things would play out.

The intent of this film obviously isn’t to sensationalise but rather to explain it; you know, for it to be as accurate as possible. The kids not being able to read or write meant that the task of memorising everything was just monumental; these kids who had never acted before. And then it was a case of rehearsing, rehearsing, rehearsing. I just rehearsed the hell out of every shot. And nobody there had ever done film before so you had to be very organised. Even things like, you know, the boys had never been on the water because they were from inland Somalia, so we had to give them all swimming lessons; it was a lot of stuff.

So how long did it take you from to shoot the film from start to finish?

We had three weeks there and we shot for five days with about 10 days of rehearsal. We had to sort of, because it was all from memory, it was just difficult in itself, but anyway it worked out and we were pretty much a well-oiled machine. Originally I had written it so that at the end there was a dog. But they [Muslims] won’t hold a dog, they won’t touch dogs, dogs are considered, to Muslims, to be dirty. So I was like, “Oh, I didn’t see that one coming”.  But it turned out to be the best thing ever to have a cat. I had already named the kid Asad, that was always his name, and it means ‘Lion’ so that worked out really well in the end.

A happy accident.

Lots of them, honestly.

Back to the casting process; how many people did you see for the main part of Asad?

Overall, hundreds. I had them improvise; it was all I did to start with. We put them in a situation and then they would have to improvise, and then I didn’t know what they were saying, so I just assumed that whatever they were saying was right. And then from that it was, if they’re comfortable with their language and they’re comfortable moving then I could get them back, and then I would do another call-back and just kind of whittle it down from there.

Asad’s been short-listed for the Oscars; how does that make you feel?

Yes; 11 films [on the shortlist] and then we’ll hopefully get to the next stage. I’m super-happy and, and I just think the thing has sort of had its own life. The Oscar thing is quite an honour, but what will be, will be. My dream here is that if we get to the finals we’ll fly the kids out of South Africa to be there on the stage if we win.

When will you find out if you’ve made the final list?

January 10th is the finalists announcement.

And you’re working on your first feature; Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus

Yes. But that’s probably going into pre-production around March. I’m really excited about it.

But that will take you out of ads for a while I would imagine would it? 

Yeah. For at least a week. No, it’s a big project, but that’s always been part of what I had hoped to be involved with, so I’m excited and I think it’s a good choice, but I guess I’ll be six months.

But you’ll come back to ads?

Yes, 100 per cent.

 

We were searching the web for press about Bryan Buckley’s short film “Asad” and, low and behold, we discovered the pages below that seemed to bare some fascinating news.

Oscars.org
HollywoodReporter.com
EntertainmentWeekley.com
ShootOnline.com
Africlectic.com

ASAD

Bryan Buckley’s short film Asad has won the BAFTA/LA Short Film prize at the 35th Mill Valley Film Festival. This is the 9th award Asad has earned this festival season and Associate Producer Matt Lefebvre accepted on behalf of the filmmakers.

For more information see Mill Valley Film Festival’s website.

Bryan Buckley and Hungry Man’s ASAD had its INTERNATIONAL PREMIERE in MONTREAL TODAY, and we are also happy to announce that ASAD is screening this weekend at the highly selective TELLURIDE FILM FESTIVAL!!! Expect to see pics of the amazing views!

If you are in Montreal, Colorado or Seattle – check out ASAD this weekend!!

And check out these links!
Telluride program guide

Montreal World Film Festival

1 Reel Film Festival Seattle

Written and directed by Bryan Buckley, Asad takes place in a war-torn fishing village in Somalia, where a boy must decide between resigning to a life of piracy or choosing the path of an honest fishing man. Bryan’s decision to make this movie, and utilize an all-Somali refugee cast, was inspired by his experiences shooting “No Autographs” during the summer of 2010. Buckley, along with long time producer Mino Jarjoura, traveled with the United Nations to Kenya and Sudan. While filming in the Kakuma Refugee Camp, Buckley interviewed many Somali refugees and was fascinated by their spirit and moved by their struggles. A year later, Buckley wrote and directed ASAD.

After premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival in April of this year, ASAD took home the prize as Best Narrative Short and became Academy Award eligible. Next, ASAD traveled west to the LA Film Festival and was named the winner of Audience Award for Best Short. Indiewire then named ASAD one of “The Five Hottest Short Films of the Summer” on the festival circuit. Continuing its journey, the film screened at the Rhode Island International Film Festival where it was awarded the Grand Prize for BEST SHORT, and became RIIFF’s official representative to the Academy in hopes of a nomination. Another honorable achievement was when famed filmmaker Michael Moore personally selected ASAD to the Traverse City Film Festival where it won the Special Jury Prize. The film festival circuit is far from over for ASAD, the film will appear around the world over the next 9 months.

If you weren’t already keeping track, here’s the full list of festivals where Asad has screened so far.

TriBeCa Film Festival – World Premiere, Best Narrative Short
Seattle International Film Festival
LA Film Festival – Audience Award, Best Short
Palm Springs International ShortFest
Traverse City Film Festival – Special Jury Prize
Rhode Island International Film Festival, Grand Prize – Best Short
HollyShorts Film Festival – Best Short Film
One Lens Film Festival – The Spotlight on Justice Award AND First Place Award for Best Film

Later this month ASAD will be travelling to Montreal for the International Premiere at the Montreal World Film Festival. Then, you can catch the film at the 1 Reel Film Festival in September and the New Orleans Film Festival in October.

Great job Bryan and the rest of the team!

 

Over the weekend, ASAD was honored with the GRAND JURY PRIZE for BEST SHORT at the RHODE ISLAND INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL!!!

Thanks to everyone who came to the screening and for all the support at at RIIFF!!

Congrats to Bryan Buckley and Hungry Man!!

Over the weekend, ASAD was honored with the GRAND JURY PRIZE for BEST SHORT at the RHODE ISLAND INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL!!!

Thanks to everyone who came to the screening and for all the support at at RIIFF!!

Congrats to Bryan Buckley and Hungry Man!!

Over the weekend, Bryan Buckley and Hungry Man’s ASAD won the SPECIAL JURY PRIZE at Michael Moore’s TRAVERSE CITY FILM FESTIVAL

“A taut script, an ebullient spirit, and amazing performances from its non-actor cast make this a touching coming-of-age narrative.” – TCFF Jury

When handing over the prize, Michael Moore said to the ASAD team, “Awesome job. I loved the film.”

Congrats to ALL!!!

Over the weekend, Bryan Buckley and Hungry Man’s ASAD won the SPECIAL JURY PRIZE at Michael Moore’s TRAVERSE CITY FILM FESTIVAL.

“A taut script, an ebullient spirit, and amazing performances from its non-actor cast make this a touching com

ing-of-age narrative.” – TCFF Jury

When handing over the prize, Michael Moore said to the ASAD team, “Awesome job. I loved the film.”

Congrats to ALL!!!


Hungry Man and Bryan Buckley‘s ASAD is at the TRAVERSE CITY FILM FESTIVAL today!! Traverse is Michael Moore’s film festival – he personally selects all the films at the festival!!

Bryan Buckley wins Best NARRATIVE SHORT FILM at the Tribeca Film Festival with his short film ASAD! Congrats Bryan and the entire team who made ASAD come to life!

 

Bryan Buckley gets interviewed about his Tribeca Film Festival short “ASAD” and experiences in Somalia. Congrats Bryan!

Bryan Buckley gets interviewed for his Tribeca Film Festival selection “ASAD” in SHOOT MAGAZINE!

WOOHOOOOO!! Written and directed by Bryan Buckley, the Hungry Man short film “Asad” has been selected to premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival! Congrats Bryan!