Osama Khaled is one of many young filmmakers in Yemen embraced and trained by #SupportYemen throughout its years of work. In 2016, Osama came up with an idea for the first short science fiction film in Yemen: “The Helmet”. #SupportYemen produced the film with a grant from the British Council, Yemen. “The Helmet”, written and directed by Osama is currently in the process of expanding to a feature length film.
“I had many dreams, which I transformed into plans with hope that they would become a reality one day. However, when the war broke out in Yemen in 2015, and during the first months of war, I witnessed how plans and possibilities faded away between episodes of gunfire and blockade. Many young people became involved in the conflict and those who did not, drowned in daily struggles to provide basic needs such as clean water and food. I sat in my dark room with no electricity everyday thinking for hours of a way out. I would look around and all what I saw is closed airports and a world rejecting people like me because of my passport regardless of any potential I have that I could contribute with to this world. The bitter feeling of being trapped with the background noise of airstrikes and news of death everywhere piled alongside with feelings of loss, rage and desperation. I wondered if there was another way out and this is how the idea of “The Helmet” was born. To me, “The Helmet” was my way out. This film is a manifestation of the daily attempts to rise after each forced fall. It is a visual story that shows one’s battle to save one’s dreams from the flames the same way people would rush to save their loved ones or valuable belongings. “The Helmet” is not only an equipment that I wear in the film to go to places, but it is also a representation of the thick skin I grew during this war in order to preserve my dreams and imagination and ability to find alternative realities instead of the imposed reality of war.”
- Osama Khaled, Filmmaker and Director of “The Helmet”