Sally El Hosaini
UWC impacts my life on a practical level because it has made the world a smaller place
Sally El Hosaini was one of Screen International’s UK Stars of Tomorrow 2009. Her short, The Fifth Bowl, won a regional BAFTA. Another short, Henna Night, has screened at numerous festivals internationally and is distributed on DVD by Peccadillo Pictures. She also co-wrote the Iranian/American feature Camelia. Her debut feature as writer/director, My Brother the Devil, was selected for the Sundance Screenwriters and Director’s Labs. It goes into production in 2010. Her company Trouble & Desire Films has two other features in development. www.sallyelhosaini.com
What do you think you do differently as a result of your UWC education and what impact do you believe UWC has had on your life?
Being educated in this way has given me a strong sense of identity, idealism, and a love of celebrating the differences between people. It’s my deep love of people and desire to examine human nature that motivates my work. I’m passionate about making films and telling stories that inspire, explore the complexities, and contradictions of the world. To understand something more deeply requires that we be open to the ideas of others and be willing to part with our present opinions. This was one of the most important lessons I learnt at Atlantic College. Nothing is ever black or white. And this filters through to my films where I like to explore the grey areas.
Having attended a UWC impacts my life on a practical level because it has made the world a smaller place. I have friends in most countries and feel I’m a citizen of the world, part of a global community. This global outlook affects the stories I’m interested in telling. I hope to make films all over the world.
What is your favourite/one of your favourite UWC memories?
On our first day at college the whole year was gathered in the Bradenstoke Hall. We were quiet and apprehensive, unsure what to expect. Colin Jenkins, the principal, took to the podium and simply said, “You are Atlantic College.” I remember getting goose bumps and being filled with a sense of empowerment and responsibility. I realised that this incredible school that I had read about, dreamed of, and anticipated attending was only what we made it. I was sixteen years old and nobody had ever entrusted me with that much freedom and responsibility. One of the hallmarks of a UWC education is that you’re encouraged to set your own guidelines and your own rules. In fact it awakened within us our own demands and raised our own expectations of ourselves. You never know how tall you are until you’re asked to rise.