Directing: Barbara Celis Editing: Barbara Celis, Cheree Dillon, Julien Betoret
Production: Barbara Celis, Alessandra Zeka
Runtime: 01 hr : 05 min : 00 sec
"Surviving Amina" is a challenging love story about hope in the face of death. It is an intimate diary on resilience that explores how we construct meaning from events that defy our emotional understanding: the loss of a child.
New York and Italy set the backdrop for this provocative and engrossing portrait of a family of artists through a three year period marked by the Leukemia diagnosis of their second child, baby Amina, and the aftermath of her death. Shot in a veritť style in New York and Italy, "Surviving Amina" doesnít follow the medical details; it focuses on the emotional journey of the couple as they try to cope with happiness and sorrow, passion and contempt, illness and fear. They have to look after a sick baby, whose nature is infectiously happy, while also taking care of their eldest child, who is equally buoyant and magnetic. In stark contrast the parentís relationship turns dark, bitter and antagonistic.
"Surviving Amina" is not only a chronicle of a dreadful disease; itís a chronology of love and resilience bounded on intimacy, truth and hope. Without ever judging and with immense sensibility it raises disturbing questions about how we confront the most extreme of circumstances.
She is a Spanish journalist who lives in New York since 1999. For the past 12 years she has been a regular contributor for the Spanish newspaper El Pais. Her articles have been also featured on the LA Weekly, Vogue, GQ, Cinemania, Rolling Stone, and La Repubblica, among others. She specializes in arts and culture but through her 14 years career she has covered all kind of news, from the 9/11 attacks to Hurricane Katrina. Surviving Amina is her first documentary, but she has extensive experience as a producer, having worked for The Family Film Productions in New York for over 4 years. She produced the feature film The other shoe and the award winning short The Artist, among others. She has a MA in Journalism by UAM/El Pais. She won the 2011 Paco Rabal Award of Cultural Journalism and the USC Annenberg/Getty Arts Journalism Fellowship 2009. She blogs at www.cronicasbarbaras.com.