Following the successful launch of the new documentary film “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” at the Cochrane Theatre, London, on October 21, 2009 — and the current mini-US tour of the film (with Andy Worthington showing it at the New America Foundation in Washington D.C. today, and in the Bay Area on Tuesday and Wednesday) — the second screening in London is taking place on Sunday November 22 at the Prince Charles Cinema off Leicester Square, as part of a double bill organized by Dochouse. Based at Riverside Studios, Dochouse was formed to support and promote documentary in the UK, and, since 2002, has been showcasing the best documentary films from around the globe, with screenings and events in cinemas across London.
The screening on November 22 is at 6 pm, and tickets are available from the Prince Charles Cinema website. The double bill also includes a screening of “Gitmo: The New Rules of War” (2005) at 4 pm, and there will also be a Q&A after the screening of “Outside the Law” with directors Andy Worthington and Polly Nash, and former Guantánamo prisoner Omar Deghayes, who is featured in the film.
About the film
“Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” is a new documentary film, directed by Polly Nash and Andy Worthington (and inspired by Andy’s book, The Guantánamo Files). The film tells the story of Guantánamo (and includes sections on extraordinary rendition and secret prisons) with a particular focus on how the Bush administration turned its back on domestic and international laws, how prisoners were rounded up in Afghanistan and Pakistan without adequate screening (and often for bounty payments), and why some of these men may have been in Afghanistan or Pakistan for reasons unconnected with militancy or terrorism (as missionaries or humanitarian aid workers, for example).
The film is based around interviews with former prisoners (Moazzam Begg and, in his first major interview, Omar Deghayes, who was released in December 2007), lawyers for the prisoners (Clive Stafford Smith in the UK and Tom Wilner in the US), and journalist and author Andy Worthington, and also includes appearances from Guantánamo’s former Muslim chaplain James Yee, Shakeel Begg, a London-based Imam, and the British human rights lawyer Gareth Peirce.
Focusing on the stories of three particular prisoners — Shaker Aamer (who is still held), Binyam Mohamed (who was released in February 2009) and Omar Deghayes — “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” provides a powerful rebuke to those who believe that Guantánamo holds “the worst of the worst” and that the Bush administration was justified in responding to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 by holding men neither as prisoners of war, protected by the Geneva Conventions, nor as criminal suspects with habeas corpus rights, but as “illegal enemy combatants” with no rights whatsoever.
“Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo” is a Spectacle Production (74 minutes, 2009).
About the directors and the production company
Andy Worthington is a journalist, and the author of three books, including The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison (Pluto Press). Visit his website here.
Polly Nash is a lecturer at the London College Of Communication (LCC), part of the University of the Arts, London, and has worked in film and TV for 20 years. Core funding for the film was provided by LCC.
Spectacle is an independent television production company specializing in documentary, community-led investigative journalism and participatory media. Spectacle programs have been broadcast across Europe, Australia and Canada and have won international awards. Visit their website here.
Andy’s book The Guantánamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America’s Illegal Prison is published by Pluto Press, distributed by Macmillan in the US, and available from Amazon — click on the following for the US and the UK. To receive new articles in your inbox, please subscribe to my RSS feed (and I can also be found on Facebook and Twitter). Also see my definitive Guantánamo prisoner list, published in March 2009, and if you appreciate my work, feel free to make a donation.
This is from Jim Bovard, at his blog:
Andy Worthington, the author of The Guantanamo Files, is touring the U.S. with his excellent new film, “Outside the Law: Stories from Guantánamo.” He will be in California later this week.
“Outside the Law” does a fine job of blending the legal issues and personal details to burn home the human cost of subverting the Constitution.
I saw the film last night at a Future of Freedom Foundation event in Fairfax, VA. Worthington’s reputation drew some Pentagon folks to the event who don’t normally show up at libertarian think tank gigs…
The film will probably be offered for sale as a DVD in the coming months.
Thanks, Jim. It was great to meet you last night — and Jacob and Bart, and many other FFF supporters. I appreciate the support.
Writer, campaigner, investigative journalist and commentator. Recognized as an authority on Guantánamo and the “war on terror.” Co-founder, Close Guantánamo, co-director, We Stand With Shaker. Also, singer and songwriter (The Four Fathers) and photographer.
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