‘Partition Stories’, an Indo-Pakistani documentary project is raising funds for post-production on crowdfunding platform indiegogo. Co-producer Surbhi Dewan writes why the film should be supported.

I was a grad student in upstate New York when I had a chance meeting with Mara Ahmed, a Pakistani-American documentary filmmaker. Very soon we realized that both she and I had the same story to tell. Even though we had been born many years after the Partition of India, and on opposite sides of the border, our personal connection to that historic event had clearly left a strong, lasting impression. And this was the story we were eager to share with the world.

We started work on ‘Partition Stories’ over five years ago, but in many ways the film has been a part of our lives since we were children, when we heard stories about this most painful and arduous journey undertaken by our families. It is now our turn to tell their stories, and the story of a shared culture, language and history. ‘Partition Stories’ is an attempt to document the event, preserve memories, and pay homage to these brave men and women in our lives.

The film has been shot in three different countries, on two continents. We’ve captured some beautiful footage in Lahore and Delhi to give audiences a sense of place and culture. The film will be filled with art: stunning painterly animation by Moscow-based artist and animator Gayane Bagdasaryan, the powerful words of British poet John Siddique and Pakistani writer Uzma Aslam Khan, original music by Brooklyn-based folk musician Sunny Zaman and piano performances by Ruth Demaree Peck. Our team is diverse and intercontinental, a fact which underscores our belief in the universality of this film and the themes of coexistence, which it highlights.

‘Partition Stories’ focuses on a unique event, but derives lessons that remain urgently relevant today. The film is now at a crucial stage and we seek your help to complete it in 2014. We have already completed production of the film and are ready to start editing. We have launched a crowdfunding campaign to help pay for the final polishing of the film including professional composing, sound mixing, animation, and color correction. So far we have achieved 60% of our target with about 80 funders! We are now looking to reach 100% of our goal with your help. If you log on to our campaign page, you will be able to see the director’s intro to the project and a detailed write-up. Please show your support by contributing and become a part of our global team!

This project is a labor of love for both Mara and I. It is also an important cross-border collaboration and we would really appreciate all the support we can get to make this film happen.

To contribute, please visit our Indiegogo Campaign page here.

Surbhi Dewan (Co-Producer, ‘Partition Stories’) is an independent film professional and a freelance producer, scriptwriter & researcher based in New Delhi. She recently worked on BORN TO RUN: THE STORY OF MILKHA SINGH, produced by Viacom18 Media Pvt Ltd, where she headed research, scriptwriting, and production for the feature length documentary film. Her short documentary TIME WILL TELL has received great appreciation from a variety of audiences in the US, Europe and India. Surbhi graduated with an MFA in film from Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, New York, and received her BA degree in Political Science from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University. To learn more about her work, please visit SurbhiDewan.com.

Mara Ahmed (Director & Producer, ‘Partition Stories’) has lived and been educated in Belgium, Pakistan and the United States. She has an MBA and another Master’s in Economics. For most of her life she worked in corporate finance. In 2004, Mara resigned from her job in order to devote herself to her true passion: art and film. Her first film, THE MUSLIMS I KNOW was meant to start a dialogue between American Muslims and non-Muslims. Her second film, PAKISTAN ONE ON ONE, is a broad survey of public opinion in Pakistan, about issues of interest to Americans. Both films have been broadcast on America’s Public Broadcasting System, shown at film festivals around the US and internationally, and screened on countless college and university campuses. You can find out more about Mara’s work at NeelumFilms.com.