The following films were recently restored by researcher and filmmaker of the Palestine Film Unit, Khadijeh Habashneh Abu Ali, to honor the 50th anniversary of the founding of the PFU and the 10 year anniversary of the death of filmmaker and PFU founder, Mustafa Abu Ali:
Scenes from Occupation in Gaza, by Mustafa Abu Ali (12 min.)
They Do Not Exist, by Mustafa Abu Ali (23 min.)
The Children of…., by Khadijeh Habashneh Abu Ali (22 min.)
Sheyma Buali’s 2012 interview with filmmaker Mohanad Yaqubi in Ibraaz sheds some light on the importance and practices of the PFU:
Yaqubi: “The Palestine Film Unit (PFU) came together as the filmic arm of Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). After a few reformations, it eventually became the Palestinian Cinema Institute, which was part of the Unified Media, the information arm of the PLO. They made films until 1982. When the Israeli army invaded Beirut, the PLO and its units had to wrap up and move elsewhere. Since the process of expulsion was rapid, a lot was left behind, including the cinematic archive, which they thought was too heavy and left it with a view to returning to it later on.
But what is significant about such a revolutionary institution is that with every film they made, they would make around 70 copies and send them out to PLO offices around the world, student unions, worker unions, political parties, festivals and so on. So, mathematically-speaking, there are 70 copies of every film scattered all around the world.”