For Sama is the incredible story of Waad al-Kateab, a journalist/filmmaker who filmed her life for over five years during the conflict in Aleppo, Syria. Waad documented her personal journey as she married a doctor who operated the only functioning hospital in their besieged area, gave birth to a daughter (Sama), and continued filming the cataclysmic events unfolding around her. At its core, this documentary serves as a love letter from a mother to her daughter, as Waad captures deeply moving scenes of love, laughter, loss, sacrifice and survival.
In January 2016 Waad al-Kateab started documenting the horrors of Aleppo for Channel 4 News in a series of devastating films simply titled Inside Aleppo. The reports she made for Channel 4 News on the conflict in Syria, and the most complex humanitarian crisis in the world, became the most watched pieces on the UK news program– and received almost half a billion views online and won 24 awards – including the 2016 International Emmy for breaking news coverage. Waad was a marketing student at the University of Aleppo when protests against the Assad regime swept the country in 2011. She taught herself how to film – and started filming the human suffering around her as Assad forces battled rebels for control of Aleppo. She stayed through the devastating siege and when she and her family were evacuated from Aleppo in December 2016 she managed to get all her footage out. Waad lives in London with her husband Hamza and two daughters.
Edward Watts is an Emmy award-winning, BAFTA nominated filmmaker who has directed over twenty narrative and documentary films that tell true stories of courage, heroism and humour from across the world, covering everything from war crimes in the Congo to the colourful lives of residents in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro. His 2015 film Escape from ISIS exposed the brutal treatment of the estimated 4 million women living under the rule of the Islamic State and, for the first time on television, told the extraordinary story of an underground network trying to save those it can. It received numerous international awards and citations, including an International Emmy and Bafta nomination for Best Current Affairs Documentary.