Screening Identity presents: THE FINAL FILMS

We proudly present to you the five films we made during the IPP Screening Identity!

In CISV, human rights are this years main focus area. This IPP (International Peoples Project) wanted to use our freedom of speech, a human right, through films. The participants have explored how belonging is important for your perception of who you are, how the situation of migrants in Norway is, how differently a sentence with «I am» can end, and how easy it is to say «you are». We are proud to present the results of our 3 week workshop about identity and migration in Oslo!



Made by Nancy Smith, Madeleine Whalen and Dario Giuliati.

«I still can smile» is a film about the challenges to feel belonging in a group, and how it affects the way we look at our identities. Bullying is a universal problem, that specially affects people in a young age. We meet people with different stories about bullying, both the victims and also some of the bullies.



Made by Mint Siranda, Viktoria Kisgergely, Tatiana Carvalho and Ashish Singh.

Parts of me is a mosaic of four different people, and the small things in their lives that makes out their personalities. Eventually, their different traits is what makes them connect.



Made by Miranda Pieron, Gábor Bencze and Shangar Hashemi.

Shaping Identity tells the story of two people who have migrated to Oslo, hoping it would improve their lives. One has fled because of political reasons and one has moved for the experience and opportunities.



Made by Michel Nowak, Kan Pensagow and Mila Gianni.

Behind the frame is a social experiment. The film was shot at Oslo´s opera house, where different people sat down behind a frame letting the people who pass by describe who they are. Can appearence alone be enough to understand who people are?



Made by Soňa Hlavová, Jonathon Haggardy and Julia Ribiero.

The film International Peoples Identity tells the story of our IPPs group, and what the different personalities think about their own identity. What shapes us? When placed in a group with 11 different nationalities trying to work together, we realise the differences, but more importantly, how similar we are to each other. What makes a group special, and what connects us to each other?

Screening Identity conclusion

Three weeks flew by.  CISV Norway IPP produced 5 films that were really, really good–if I do say so myself.  Our premiere was very well attended (we had a full house!) And most of the participants are back home resuming their normal lives.  A lucky few are still traveling in Scandinavia, Portugal, Spain, etc.  Keep posting pictures of your travels.  We love to see them.

So what did we learn at our IPP?  We learned to live as a group of 23 people of different ages, different languages, different cultures and religions, different eating and sleeping habits.  We learned to embrace those differences and make lasting friendships.  We all learned to love Norwegian bread and spread.  We learned so much about the push and pull of migration and its positive and negative affect on people–children in particular.    We learned how to make a film.   We learned how to sleep even though the sun never sets.  We learned a little more about each of the countries our participants live…..such as the Puli dog comes from Hungary!  The kids learned from the «mamas» and more importantly, the «mamas» learned from the kids. Many  learned how to say «grandma» and «horse» in Thai.  We learned that it isn’t a good idea to miss the 51 bus….as the next one is at least an hour later.  And, we learned that we all still have a LOT to learn.

Thanks everyone for a fantastic three weeks in Oslo!  Memories to last a lifetime!




It’s a wrap!

5 films are in the can and ready for the premiere tonight.   Everyone is bleary eyed several all  nighters needed to produce some quality movies……but we are excited for tonight!  Come join us if you are in Oslo tonight!!!

More tomorrow……

The Premiere

CISV Norway would like to invite you to the Premiere of Screening Identity:  a series of short films on identity and migration.

Why Screening Identity?

Between June 17 and July 6, 23 people from Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Hungary, India, Kurdistan, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Thailand and the United States have come together in Oslo, Norway to learn from each other and leave something useful behind.  The goal of this International People’s Project has been to create a series of short films on migration and identity.

We hope this collection of stories will get people to start thinking about current issues related to migration and identity, not only in Norway, but also around the world.    While working on this project, participants learned about what identity means in different contexts, about how we are all in some way migrants and most importantly how building global friendship and cross cultural understanding is key toward building a more peaceful world.


Time to edit!

I have a new appreciation for the people who get the awards for Best Editing Short Film.  Who’s kidding who, I have a new appreciation for ANYONE who edits film for a living.  My eyes are beginning to cross, my back hurts from stooping over the computer, and my poor MacBook is hoping for a break soon.  This is not easy….iMovie tricks everyone in to thinking they can be an editor.  If it were only that easy.

My film group has filmed 6 interviews that average 32 minutes each.  (One interview is in Portuguese and needs to be translated and subtitled).  We have various clips of video from each interview, audio from the camera,  audio from the boom (last week I told you we were using actual film equipment–I wasn’t kidding).  Now we have to match the video to the audio from the boom and then delete the audio from the camera.  For each clip.  For each clip from each interview.

Next we cut……and cut……and then cut some more.    Our goal is a 5-7 minute short film, cut from 192 minutes of raw footage.  And then we cut again…….all in the hopes of a final product that is watchable!

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The coffee is brewing, the music is playing, we are ready to tackle editing!  Keep your fingers crossed.

Friday, the sun was peaking through the clouds (just a little, but we did get to see it)  as we boarded the bus for Oslo to shoot some incredible footage for our films.   The 51 bus runs right by our campsite and then at Nydalen-T stop, we switched to the train for the remainder of our trip. (these are important details for later!)


Oslo S (the city center bus/train terminal) was bustling with Friday commuters and tourists.  My group of 6 decided to head to the harbor where there would be plenty of photo opportunities.  And we were not disappointed!

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It was fairly exhausting to shoot all those pictures and we needed sustenance.  We chose a nice restaurant by the waterside, with a beautiful view of the harbor and the castle in the distance.  Sona and I ordered fiskesouppe (because it sounded so Norwegian!)  Delicious! I asked the chef for the recipe, which he reluctantly gave to us.

IMG_2480_small IMG_2485      Next, we visited our cohorts who were shooting footage at the Oslo Opera House.


Their choice of location was really well thought out…..the Opera House has magnificent views, with so many diverse people to interview.  Well done Mila, Michael and Kan!!

After a long day of running around Oslo, it was time to hustle back to Oslo train/bus station.   Maddy, Mila, Jon, Julia and I just missed the bus back to camp, because a few had to reload their transportation tickets. (This is Mila, waiting in line, resting on the prop they used in their shoot–notice that the Norwegians aren’t phased in the least that a Brazilian woman is sitting on a stool in line, in Central Station!).


Now the real adventure began.  The five of us missed the bus back to camp so we decided to retrace our steps from the commute in the morning.  Take the train to Nydalen stop, transfer to the 51 bus.  Simple, right?  We read the time/track board to find out which track to go to……track 16!  Ok, that was easy.  And we had plenty of time (about 8 minutes) for a bathroom break.  We boarded the 6:46 train to Nydalen with our props, cameras, and plenty of time to make it for Ashishe’s homemade Indian dinner.

«Nydalen»……the conductor said.  We got off the train, looked around the desolate landscape and realized this was NOT the Nydalen from the morning.   There was no one around, no bus stop for us to go to……hmmmm….now what?!  Like I said earlier, now is when the adventure began.  Our little group traversed most of northeast Oslo by train, bus and foot.  We spent many hours (yes, you read that correctly—hours) at bus stops, we met a fascinating man from Afghanistan who was kind enough to let us use his WC, we waved to people driving by to see who would wave back, we met many people on buses who gave us the worst directions, we agitated bus drivers because we laughed so much, and probably too loudly—Norwegians are pretty quiet people.   We found out that Maddy can really rap on the fly and Jon can «lay down the beat».  Here are a few of our bus stop shenannigans.





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Eventually, the 51 arrived to take us back……FOUR hours after our adventure began at Oslo S.


My husband and I always say that getting lost while traveling is the best.  You meet the best people, you discover the most unusual places and things, you get a real taste of the culture.  I say getting lost for four hours with this group was definitely the best!

(and the stool made it back, too!)






Shooting in the city

Whereas none of us could imagine a couple of days ago that we would hit the road with all the professional filming equipment that was rented for us by our amazing staff group, today we felt like professionals while shooting our last scenes. From camera to boom, and from advanced voice recorder to shotgun mic; from now on we can handle everything. We started the week with an idea what our movie should be like, and here we are at the end of the second week: we’ve learned a lot, collected all our raw material, and we’re ready for the editing process.

Four days ago we started the first shooting day with my group with a clear idea of what we wanted to produce: a movie about migration and identity. By showing two people who migrated to Norway for very different reasons, and who went through very different experiences, we wanted to show how this process of migration could affect your identity. One of our protagonists would be our group member who migrated to Norway last year because of political reasons, whereas the other would be the Hungarian girl that hosted me the first couple of nights of this IPP.

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On day one we started to experiment with our equipment: shooting the first scenes of our documentary, and recording the first of our two stories. Experimenting takes time, but nevertheless our day was very productive and provided enough incentives to look forward to the second day of shooting. The third day provided a whole new challenge: instead of filming in our ‘safe haven’ Maridalen Skole, we travelled to Oslo to shoot some scenery that would illustrate our two interviews. Out in the open, with the sun as our new best friend, we spent the day at Aker Brygge, shooting several time lapses of people, of boats, and of arriving and departing trams and buses, eating ice cream at the sea side, walking past fountains, beautiful buildings, and happy people: a wonderful day! Today was our fourth and last day of shooting, with again a new challenge.

We departed from our campsite with the 9.22h bus to Oslo City Centre to interview our second protagonist. Our experiments of the previous days were paying off: a very smooth interview was followed by several (unfortunately rainy) shots. At the end of the afternoon we arrived back at the campsite; satisfied and tired.


And now we can only hope for the best: will we be able to turn our raw material into the best movie ever this next week? To be continued…

Birth and Growth

Week two of Screening Identity is coming to an end. When Portugese staff member Sergio woke up this morning he was terrified, and almost out of breath he called me and stuttered: «where is everyone? This camp is like a ghost camp!». Luckily his fear that the project had come to a sudden end, was false. I reassured him that nobody had disappeared – they simply started working! Five fabulous film crews are spread out all over Oslo as we speak; interviewing, organizing, recording sound, shooting scenes – basically (and finally) making movies!


It strikes me that this is what parenting must feel like. You spend months planning and learning in the prenatal phase, then after the intense delivery session you meet your newborn, you get to know it, you try to inspire and teach it as best as you can, before it suddenly leaves the nest. And left are the parents with their hopes and fears. Will the child succeed? Will it find happiness?

It has been wonderful to see the birth and growth of this group. It started out as a more or less random selection of individuals with different backgrounds and ideas before growing into something which is bigger than the mere sum of these individuals: a common understanding of group members’ different capacities, experiences and visions brought together in a practical project.


Left at camp is me and Sergio. We are doing what retired parents usually do; cleaning, feeding the backyard chickens, drinking coffee and doing small repairs around the house. We glance out the window and wait for our now adult offspring to return home, as we are always proud and excited to see what it has achieved.



Roll Camera 1……

Last week we had a crash course in filmmaking.  The goal for our IPP is to produce several short films with the central theme of IDENTITY.  What is identity and why does it even matter?

The first week of our IPP, our fearless staff organized lectures and excursions to help us understand that many refugees and asylum seekers in Norway tend to lose their identity (and hope) while they wait for the Norwegian government to decide their fate.

With our new found knowledge, we have been set loose—our  5 different groups have written scripts and developed plot lines.  We spend hours listening to LOTS of music and sound effects to make our clips just perfect; we are burning through a multitude of  batteries in cameras/microphones/ zooms/etc; we change shooting locations on the fly due to the notorious Norwegian rain, we speak the lingo–  «lower the boom» now makes sense, Golden Ratio is my new rule, and continuity is my goal.

We are looking for inspiration everywhere.  My film group has decided to incorporate the rain in to our film–hey, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.  (it will probably end up on the cutting room floor, but we are going to shoot it nonetheless!).

I am really excited to see what all of these creative cohorts of mine will produce.  I am constantly amazed at their intelligence and creativity;  so much so that I am quite certain you will see our group at the Academy Awards next year accepting the awards for Documentary Short Subject, Short Film editing, and Original Score.  Yeah, I’m that impressed with this group!