Co-directors Sarah Friedland and Rami Younis expected to attend

Once considered a capital of the Arab-Muslim empire, the bustling city of Lyd was a thriving Palestinian city with a rich history. It entertained international visitors, boasting an international airport and a major railway station that connected Palestine to the rest of the world. Overtaken by Israeli forces in 1948 and renamed the Hebrew “Lod,” the massacre and expulsion of Arabs dramatically reshaped the profile of the city.

Utilizing a wildly creative blend of archival footage, firsthand testimonies, animation, and science fiction, this speculative documentary, voiced by the Palestinian actress Maisa Abd Elhadi, is told from the personified point of view of the 5,000 year old metropolis itself. Lyd posits that the devastation was forceful enough to fracture space and time creating two cities: one occupied and one free. 

This powerful film contextualizes how the freighted past fuels the present day conflict, while artfully and thoughtfully making space to imagine a more peaceful future. Lyd is a must see. — Lori Donnelly

Bay Area Premiere

Rami Younis (Director/Producer) is a Palestinian filmmaker, writer, journalist and activist from Lyd. He was a 2019-20 Fellow at the Harvard Divinity School. As a journalist, he mainly wrote for the online magazine +972 and served as both writer and editor of its Hebrew sister site, “local call”, a journalistic project he co-founded, designed to challenge Israeli mainstream journalism outlets. Rami served as a parliamentary consultant and media spokesperson for Palestinian member of Knesset (Israeli parliament) Haneen Zoabi. Rami is also co-founder and manager of the first-everPalestine Music Expo, an event that connects the local Palestinian music scene to the worldwide industry. Younis is the host of the Arabic-language daily newsshow, “On the Other Hand.”

Sarah Ema Friedland (Director/Cinematographer) is an NYC-based media artist and educator. Her work has screened at institutions including Cannes Film Festival, Lincoln Center, Anthology Film Archives, PBS, the Tang Teaching Museum, The Chelsea Museum, The Queens Museum, The 14th Street Y, and the MIT List Center. Her works have been supported by grants and fellowships, including the Jerome Founation, NYSCA, the Palestine American Research Center, the LABA House of Study, and the MacDowell Colony. Named one of the “Top 10 Independent Filmmakers to Watch” by Independent Magazine, she is a recipient of the Paul Robeson Award from the Newark Museum, and was nominated for a New York Emmy. Friedland is a member of the Meerkat Media Collective and the Director of the MDOCS Storyteller’s Institute at Skidmore College where she is also a Teaching Professor in the MDOCS Program.

Co-sponsored by Ron Abileah and Marlene Winograd


Sunday July 28, 2024
12:30 p.m.
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Tuesday July 30, 2024
3:45 p.m.
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Release Year
Festival Year(s)
Running Time
79 minutes

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