PAKISTAN, February 27, 2012 – Pakistani filmmaker and producer Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy took to the stage with director Daniel Junge to accept the Academy Award for Saving Face, winner of Best Documentary (short subject) at the 84th Academy Awards.
The award is a first for Ms. Obaid-Chinoy and the country. It is also a first nomination for a Pakistani film. Earning Pakistan’s first ever Oscar Award, Ms. Obaid-Chinoy makes all Pakistanis proud and gives hope for a better and brighter future of the country. Ms. Obaid-Chinoy dedicated the award to all the heroes working in the country and the women in Pakistan working for change.
More than 100 women are disfigured in acid attacks every year and the film, as well as win, will help to increase global awareness of this violent crime against Pakistani women that is seldom discussed.
“Don’t give up your dreams,” Ms. Obaid-Chinoy says in her acceptance. “This is for you.”
Saving Face tells of the work of Dr. Mohammad Jawad, a British-Pakistani surgeon who provides reconstructive surgery to woman who have been burned with battery acid by men, often their husbands or family members.
The film follows one woman, and the female Pakistani lawyer, who had the courage to fight for justice and to see the attackers imprisoned.
In interviews the filmmaker says she hopes the film will ‘resonate for others in Pakistan.’
“It is a story of hope with a powerful message for the Pakistani audience. I felt this would be a great way to show how Pakistanis can help other Pakistanis overcome their problems,” she said.
While this is a first Academy Award for Obaid-Chinoy, her films have won international acclaim. Her documentary, Pakistan’s Taliban Generation (2010), won an International Emmy Award.
Among other nominations were “God Is the Bigger Elvis,” by Rebecca Cammisa and Julie Anderson, “The Barber of Birmingham,” by Gail Dolgin and Robin Fryday, “Incident in New Baghdad” by James Spione, and “The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom,” by Lucy Walker and Kira Carstensen.
To read more about the documentary and the people behind it, read Saving Face Pakistan’s first Academy Award nomination
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