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Jude Chehab

Season 4

EPISODE 2 - Jude Chehab

Meet Jude Chehab, the rising-star filmmaker whose debut documentary "Q" is making waves in the industry! Named one of Vogue Magazine's top documentaries of 2023, "Q" paints a mesmerizing portrait of her mother's relationship to an all-female religious group in Lebanon. It has won multiple awards including Best New Documentary Director at the Tribeca Film Festival, a Cinema Eye Honor, and earned Jude her spot on DOCNYC's '40 under 40' list. This week on the podcast, Jude tells us how she learned to weave a story that retains some level of mystery, but is grounded in humanity, as she learned from one of her film teachers, the legendary Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami.


Abdul-Rehman Malik: Welcome to This Being Human. I’m your host Abdul-Rehman Malik. On this podcast, I talk to extraordinary people from all over the world, who’s life, ideas, and art are shaped by Muslim culture.

Jude Chehab: We have a lot of the answers within ourselves, and good mentors or people around you are just helping you get to that vision that you have within yourself. Not necessarily maybe telling you the film that they would have wanted to make. 


Abdul-Rehman Malik: Jude Chehab is a Lebanese-American cinematographer and filmmaker whose latest creation, Q has captured hearts and minds, earning prestigious accolades, including a notable recognition at the Tribeca Film Festival. Q is a uniquely personal documentary film. At its core is the captivating journey of Jude's mother, Hiba. Against the backdrop of a close-knit family upbringing in the United States, Jude finds herself back in Lebanon, compelled to unravel the enigma surrounding her mother's fervent dedication to an all-female religious order. Tackling a subject like this would be challenging for an experienced Director. Jude Chehab is under 30 and this is her first feature film. Q was named one of the best documentaries of 2023 by Vogue Magazine. It won the award for Best New Documentary Director at Tribeca. And the Grand Jury Award for Best First Feature at the Sheffield DocFest. She is a part of DOCNYC's '40 under 40' list. Jude’s shooting style is richly layered, visual and intimate. It’s resonant of her mentorship with Abbas Kiarostami. She was a part of his final student group. Her approach is visually innovative, and when you hear her talk, she exhibits wisdom well beyond her years. From her home in Marrakech, we talked about the making of Q, what drives her artistic vision and what lies beyond her current success.

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Take us back to the moment when the young Jude decides that I'm going to be a filmmaker. Because then there's some really great scenes, and you're kind of in people's faces, and at some point the adults say, you got to get that thing out of my face. I mean, what's the point at which the young Jude says, film is going to be my jam? 

Jude Chehab: Oh, wow. [laughs] Maybe from all the pushback. No, I think they were very patient with me. I was actually in a student film when I was ten at FSU, and I was acting in it at a very young age. And I think that that experience really started my love for film. And then also, whatever mom was instilling in me that, you know, we needed filmmakers. Feeling, also, this, like a void, a void that needed our presence. And that this voice was important. You know, I was, I remember being like 15, 16, I started making these short docs in Lebanon. And I would submit to youth film festivals. And I think also seeing that I was getting celebrated in that way at a young age. It's all about confidence. It's about realizing what is that I have a voice and that also that maybe this voice is worth people hearing. And so I think because at a young age, I was given a bit of that confidence and trust, and it allowed me to then be able to express myself in film. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Well, tell me about one of those early works that of course, one day we're going to watch at a place like MoMA in retrospective, Jude. I know that's going to happen, Inshallah. So give us a sneak peek into the work of the young Jude that we're going to see decades from now and fawn over. 

Jude Chehab: The first one was really bad. It's literally called The Secret to Happiness. And it was that the hijab is my secret to happiness [laughs]. So we can forget that one. I don't, I doesn't, yeah. It doesn't mirror how I feel now. But, I remember one of them was called Behind the Tents and it was actually about. Before the war in Syria, it was about Syrian kids that come in the summer to Lebanon and pick potatoes and just about their dreams and hopes. And I actually, before Q, had gone back maybe ten years later and tried looking for those kids that were in the film. But I think it was special because it was also like I was young and I was filming, you know, that generation as well, and just talking about, yeah, their hopes and dreams. And I think that at that moment it made sense to make Q as the first feature rather than that film. Like, I think it makes sense to make something that's so personal and that kind of be your introduction to the industry and to this world and to kind of really gift part of yourself in such a vulnerable way. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Mm. You know, when you read your bio, one of the things that really kind of jumped out at me was that you were in Abbas Kiarostami's final student group. And for our listeners, Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami is probably one of the most celebrated auteurs of the last 100 years. And Abbas Kiarostami's style, you know, the use of sound and music, but actually the use of silence and his employing a very pithy approach to dialog is so distinctive. But I have to say, I felt those resonances in your film. Silence is so important in Q. The glances, the position of the body in relationship to you as the documentarian, but also in relationship to the other characters and people in the story is is so important. I'm being a bit geeky here, but the idea of being in the same room with or being in conversation with Abbas Kiarostami fills me with equal amounts of delight and dread. What did it mean to be part of his final student group? 

Jude Chehab: Yeah. It was incredible. I think it shows in such maybe even subtle ways or just became part of my subconscious in making Q as well. Like so many of the lessons that he had taught us. I remember the first thing he told us when we got there was that I'm not here to teach you anything. I'm here to just remind you of what you already know. And making Q felt like that. Like, you have to go to such a deep place within yourself and find those answers. And I remember I had a mentor who said, Jude, there's a reason you're making this film. And I'd always give, you know, this very surface level answer, oh it's a film about my mom being part of this group. No no no, there's a deeper reason why you're making it, you know, turn the lights off, close your eyes and find what that reason is. And I remember the dream that the film opens with, that I had this nightmare about my mom and that I. This would always happen in my childhood. And it came back to me. And I think that was part of, you know, Kiarostami's teaching, was that we have a lot of the answers within ourselves, and good mentors or people around you are just helping you get to that vision that you have within yourself. Not necessarily maybe telling you the film that they would have wanted to make. And I think something that's clear in Kiarostami's films, which is also something that he was teaching, was just this human aspect. I mean, as you know, the films are very simple. And, you know, if you if you read like the plot line, are also just about small human tribulations or questioning, and a lot of the time with him, he would push students, to really come to terms with the fact that some things aren't believable within the stories that we were writing and that that these human stories have to be believable, that even if it's a fiction, even if it's a doc, it has to be the way that a human would react to something and to really understand human emotion. And, you know, he started very late in his life, I think he was in his 40s and he before was a graphic designer. And I think all of that really shows in his work. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: It seems like an incredibly compassionate space that he cultivated with all of you. 

Jude Chehab: Sure! [laughs]

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Or was it? [laughs]

Jude Chehab: No no no. It was. It was. I just remembered one time, I pitched this story, and he was like, that sounds like a children's book. I was like, okay, back to the, back to the notebook, um...No, it definitely was. And I think, he was the one, for example, that even taught me that you give from yourself in a film and then you take from whoever is there. And so that's the beauty of building the story. And in cinema is both of these things coming together in that way. And I think I tried to do that with my mom as best as I could. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: This idea that you just mentioned, which Kiarostami conveys to you right at the beginning of your time with him, that he was there to remind you of what you already know. This must have seemed like an interesting idea where you consider yourself as a student filmmaker, right? You're you're learning the craft. And here's the, for lack of a better word, the Sheikh, the master, saying, no, no, I'm just here to remind you of what you already knew. What did you already know? Like, what revealed itself, Jude, in that process, did you come out of it and say, hey, this is the thing that I already already knew? 

Jude Chehab: I think so much of it is like pushing us to get to some sort of essence within ourselves. You know, like even the stories that I wanted to tell there and really trying to sculpt around it and get to the heart of it, which has to come from your heart, like the artist's heart has to be, you know, connected to the work in that way. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Mm. Is there a particular scene from the film that you feel exemplifies that? 

Jude Chehab: I love the scene of my mom and dad on the balcony, where I, someone actually said it was like their favorite love scene in any film, but I feel it really depicts the love and like without, with things unspoken. They're sitting on the balcony, just for people that haven't seen it. And my dad starts mimicking this mola that's coming out from the mosque, and my mom laughs at him. Oh, you sound so macho. Why are you saying it like that? And then there's a moment of silence and he tears up, and then she puts her head on his shoulder. And it's, so much has not been said in the film between the two of them. And there's so much built up pain and years of kind of uncommunicated feelings and, just truly pain that he's felt and that she's also felt that they've never spoken about. But in that moment, it's just such a simple expression of the love that they have and also of, like, what they've been through. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Mm. What else inspires your filmmaking style? I'm sure, I can see Jude, the film nerd. You know, you have your favorite discs from the Criterion Collection. What are some of those auteurs, those directors that you go back to for inspiration and connection and to feel full again?

Jude Chehab: I think some are for their work and some are also just for their kind of philosophy. I love Tarkovsky, Satyajit Ray, even Nacer Khemir, a Tunisian filmmaker. Those are at the top of my head right now. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Do you have some favorite films? The films that have been watched more than 2 or 3 dozen times? [laughs]

Jude Chehab: I hate this question. [laughs]

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Oh, why, why why? Tell me, tell me!

Jude Chehab: I think most filmmakers hate this question! Because there's, I don't know, there's like. It's a long list. And I think also the films change as you grow.

Abdul-Rehman Malik: So in this moment,  in this moment, you are in Marrakech, Morocco. It is the month of Ramadan. We're talking about your celebrated first feature. What's a favorite film that you'd like to lean back into? 

Jude Chehab: I think because it wasn't that long ago that I watched Andrei Rublev by Tarkovsky, that's kind of at the top right now, and that maybe I wouldn't have understood it the same way that I do now five years ago, or even the time that I was in that workshop with Kiarostami. And I think it's all of these people that I'm mentioning have a certain spiritual, poetic cinema that, like you're saying that so much is within the silence and just trusting the image. And I think that that's something that's lacking today. It was tough making Q because there is so little information. And we really relied on the emotion and on taking this non-linear approach, like I always felt that it wasn’t wasn't a straight line, it was this circle. And it was, you know, twisting and turning deeper and deeper into her, into her heart, into her soul. And, I think it was hard to kind of go to institutions with a story like this, because we're so used to a straightforward approach to storytelling and especially documentary that has to be conventional. You know, I'm making a film about a group. There is a specific equation to a quote unquote cult film, you know, and the fact that I'm not following that brings up a different language to people. But I think that, for me, the spiritual language in cinema is what made me love cinema. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: You talked about this question of expectations, right? When you make a film, there's people who jump in behind it, like you said. Funders, institutions, studios, mentors. And you tell them your idea, you show them the treatments and all of that, and they get behind it. And then, like you said. Maybe when that final product comes out, it's not what they expected. Frankly, it may be not what you expected because the process itself is so emergent, right? It's something that's happening in real time. How do you deal with those expectations? 

Jude Chehab: I think the film, like you just said, changed so much over time. The film that I was starting with, that was very much just about the group, not this family story. I was curious about the group, and I wanted answers. What is this attachment my mom has had all these years? And then it just completely shifts and becomes this intimate, personal family story about the consequences of a relationship like that, rather than the actual relationship. And so I think there's an expectation from films from the region, and also me being a first time filmmaker and very vulnerable and learning as I go and wanting to listen to, you know, technically my elders in my industry. But at the same time, how do I tune out that noise and kind of make a film that, quite frankly, I can go to sleep at night feeling good about? That's what it felt like. It almost felt like, you know, does one sell out and make that film that's probably going to make me more money [laughs]? Or make this doc that came from such a true place and from, like, honestly, good intentions? yYou know, like when I started and I was going to make a film about the group, I had to ask myself, you know, do we need more bad images of Muslims out there? No. And I know that the story is much more complicated than that. And I knew that there was both pain and beauty. And how do I then give justice to that story, which is her experience. It might not be my experience with the group, but this is not a film about me. It felt, it was always a film about her and her journey. And so, yeah, there is that expectation. And then there's the release of the film where maybe people that were happy to get on board earlier on, no longer want to get on board because it wasn't the ending that they had in mind. I did not fit this narrative. You know, they wanted a film where my mom ripped her hijab off at the end of the film. It was very obvious. And I didn't give them that. And then it confuses them because what box does it sit in? Is religion bad? Is the group bad? You have to give us answers. And the film doesn't say whether or not this group should exist. It kind of leaves everything to the audience. Make your own judgments. And to really then realize that things are not black and white, that it lives in this gray space. And that this group, yeah, it could give her so much beauty. And at the same time, it can hurt her in this way. And I just wanted to honor that experience for her. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: The Jude Chehab I'm hearing right now, I could easily take those words and put them into an interview from Kiarostami or Tarkovsky or Ray. In all honesty, I think those auteurs would say the same thing. That filmmaking is a process and it should serve. It should serve those who are deeply engaged in the process of creation. That's great art. And I think you're so right to to to put your finger right in it. Is this dilemma I think so many creatives who identify as Muslim in particular have, is to fit narratives, storylines, story arcs that are vaguely familiar. And they comfort our stereotypes, don't they? And one of the things, Jude, that I found like a fascinating artistic decision was to not make everything legible. And so I found myself leaning in, like I would do in any good conversation, to stay with you and to understand because I had questions and ideas emerging. But I wanted to stay with you because I was looking for answers. I mean, that must have been a kind of an important, maybe difficult artistic decision to make, to not make everything legible, to not explain this group, to not explain other aspects of cultural or spiritual life. And let us as viewers, just experiencing it on its own terms. 

Jude Chehab: To be thrown into it. And I don't think that we... 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Totally, totally. 

Jude Chehab: Yeah. We don't experience that. Like everything has to have an introduction and has to bring you in slowly. I remember getting feedback that said, you need to put a title card, where are we? Is this, we need to know that it's Lebanon. It was like, these are not important to the story. And I think part of it was me even making bullet points and realizing, what is essential to tell this story and what isn't? What is details because we are curious as people? And then I found that the more that I knew about this group, the less that I actually understood. And so how, if people haven’t gone on a spiritual experience like my mom has, it is going to be very hard to understand, to still understand the group and that attachment. I mean, I remember. I still get questions that people don't understand the love that's there, you know. And I think it was about going beyond the group. The group is not important. You know, what's important is almost this soul snatching that happens within the film. And what happens to someone when you put your heart and your soul in the hands of someone else, and maybe that person falls. I think what makes the film then universal and to like go away from even just that spiritual experience—because it's, you know, you're talking to a big audience that maybe, like I said, have not even ever experienced, you know, this spiritual realm. And we're talking about the unseen half the time in the film and even the Anisa, the leader of the group, is unseen. So, so many levels of mystery, that I think that what I really wanted a universal audience to feel and understand was that when you strip my mother of everything, the group and the Anisa, the heart of it is someone that is searching for meaning and searching to belong. And I think those, when I even mentioned Tarkovsky and these filmmakers that I love that are, you know, Tarkovsky's Russian devout Christian, Satyajit Ray is Bengali Hindu. Like, you know, you expect a Muslim filmmaker to come with, you know, like Muslim filmmakers. And yet I'll feel more connected as a Muslim to those stories and to their type of filmmaking. And I think that what we are lacking is this search for meaning, finding that in films and an existential view of life that films should always bring up. And yet I don't feel that they are now. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: You know, in a way that search for meaning that you speak about, it also feels really connected to mystery. You know, there's a mystery. This is a mystery story as well. We want to get to the heart of this thing because we want to know why all of this is so meaningful to all of you. And the thing, Jude, is I felt invested really quick. It didn't take long. Honestly. Four minutes, 37 seconds. And I was committed. Like, you know when you watch a film that you're like, okay, I'm committed to this. And I'm not only committed to this because I'm going to be talking to the filmmaker. If you had called and canceled at that moment, I would be like, I got a free morning and I know I'm going to watch an amazing film. It was that. And I think part of that was that idea of building that mystery and calling on me as a viewer to come with you as you uncover it. 

Jude Chehab: I think a lot of that was actually found in the edit. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Oh, tell me about that. 

Jude Chehab: Yeah, I worked actually with my husband. It's very much a family affair. But he wanted every scene to maintain a certain level of tension, and I think that that's kind of what you're alluding to. The feeling that this whole film is this love thriller, it's someone's being spoken about in every scene, but that person is not even there. But they have so much power. She's in my mother's dream. She's in every conversation. She's the reason why there is, you know, a bit of dysfunction within the family. And the group themselves is also mysterious, you know, so when the drum comes in, we use the daf whenever we see the group. This is the only instrument that the group uses as well. And so it's building that visual world. It's bringing people into, like, a spiritual space. Yeah.

Abdul-Rehman Malik: I mean, of course, that magic happens in the editing room. So you're sitting there with your editor, your husband, and what's the conversation? Because you got all this raw material. Is it a feeling? Are there very clear moments of denouement that you want to capture? You know, the declining buoys, the shadow. I mean, I just, I want to be there with you for a second. 

Jude Chehab: Yeah. I think something that helped us early on in the edit was that we. I didn't want to have a three act structure, which is the standard, but we actually did find the three act structure based on what the love was looking like in those moments. And so then it became applying each scene to that feeling of love. What is the emotion she's feeling here? Is she in denial? Is she in regret? Is she still feeling a strong attachment to them? And then kind of, it just became a puzzle where we would rearrange things. And I didn't have, honestly, I don't have that much footage. I maybe had 50 hours. I know a lot of documentaries have maybe 400 hours. It was very precise, and I think that was also the way I was filming. And, you know, I would think of something that I wanted to capture and it really became like a checklist, to make sure that we got that.


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Abdul-Rehman Malik: Jude, you know,these days I'm thinking a lot about healing, despite so much trauma in the world. And I'm thinking about your film because as I was watching it, this question of healing, you know, kept coming up for me, you know, how can a film help us heal?

Jude Chehab: I think, in a way, that this film did heal. I don't like using that word. But heal my mother. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: No, and I'd love to hear why. Why that word is made problematic for you. 

Jude Chehab: It feels very, like, from 0 to 100. I think that's how it feels. Like one and done. And I don't think that things work that way. I think, you know, what I see as cinema and as what I want to keep doing is, you know, sharing a certain level of beauty and sacredness. And I think that that beauty is what impacts people and makes us feel something. Like, I just feel it's not, yeah, I don't think it's necessarily about everyone coming into the film and feeling a sense of healing. I think it's just a feel something. And I think with my mom, you know, she called me recently and said, oh, I think the film was my last love letter to the Anisa, and that that meant a lot to me. I mean, that was really what I wanted her to get to. Some sort of closure and to capture this, to document this moment of her life and help her get closer to who she really is. I think making the film was a means to have her come to terms with herself and come back to who Hiba is. I mean, the theater scene at the end where she's back on stage. It was her dream her whole life. And. Yeah, it was. Who is she outside of the group? And so I think, yes, there is healing and in different ways, but I don't think it's that straightforward. You know, making the film, even after the release of the film, there was like backlash from the group. And it wasn't just smooth sailing. “Wow, we made this beautiful thing together!” Like, there was all these ups and downs and constantly having to have conversations. What are you comfortable with? What are you not comfortable with? And, I think it's just. Shows, you know, these things are complicated. You know, I think even what you were talking about earlier about like, the mystery of the film, I think it's Lynch who says it that, life is complicated. So films have to be as well. And I think it's even the making of the film has that level of complication. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: If it's not healing, maybe the word is balancing? You know, helping to bring about some kind of equilibrium. A place where you can approach the fullness and complexity of ourselves with some measure of clarity. Am I pushing too hard? 

Jude Chehab: No, no, no. Now I'm trying to think of what the term is. I think it should all be a reminder of something beyond ourselves. I think that's how I see cinema. Like, something outside of ourselves. And I think that just once again, talking about modern cinema that lacks beauty, but maybe has aesthetics that is, kind of all about that, the images that are just eye candy that don't have real substance beyond them. It feels like…it should remind you of something beyond yourself, which might just be also my Sufi thinking. [laughs]

Abdul-Rehman Malik: I am fully behind you on that, Jude, I can buy into that in so many ways. You know, we live in a time where there's a lot of talk about intergenerational conversations or the lack of thereof, you know. And I think to myself, wow, with all the talk of intergenerational conversations, Jude Chehab’s film is all about intergenerational conversations. And so, are intergenerational conversations, really important right now? I mean, do you feel this might be a kind of a continuing theme in your work? Of how to connect generations. Not just connect generations, but really, you know, ways in which generations speak to each other, with each other. Encounter one another, maybe in a deeper way?

Jude Chehab: You know, when I started the film, I think I was very naive, and I thought that my mom would kind of come to where I am in my thinking, and I and I think by the end of it, there was so much more of this feeling of just understanding and also acceptance. I don't think I would ever, if you're asking my work moving forward, never making something personal again. But also, I think part of that conversation is, once again, I don't know. It not coming from a very self-centered space and individualistic space. I think by the end it's like, okay, yeah, I kind of didn't get what I wanted in the making of the film. Does mom say, oh, I regret all these years and, snaps out of it? Not really. ‘Til the last minute, she's saying I miss being part of the group, you know? And I think, it's about loving people, for who they are. Not to romanticize it, but that's how I feel with my mom. Like, I understand her better because I understand the struggle that she went through. But at the same time, now I have to also accept maybe something that I don't fully understand. I don't fully understand the love that she had, and continues to have for them. But that's part of the love that I have for her. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: And I guess what happens is, is that those are seeds, right? I mean, your mom's ability to hold love and separation together at the same time and move on and find new ways and renewed ways of being herself. I often wonder, you know, as I approach 50, how often like, those things that I observed in my parents growing up are now visiting me? [laughs] I do find myself leaning back into the generations that came before. It feels like, at least I got something, I got some kind of scaffolding, you know, that I can rely on. And maybe that's why these intergenerational conversations are so important. The challenges may be unique, but our human response is…there's wisdom, right? I think we'd call it wisdom. 

Jude Chehab: Yeah. And I think we've been pushed to kind of, forget about our past or our, even our ancestors. And I think it's so important to just. I don't know, I always remind myself how we come from a tradition. And I think that it's so necessary in understanding ourselves and our place in the world. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Jude, the response to this film, Q, your first feature documentary has been nothing short of remarkable. Mashallah. And really, it's awesome. And, you know, the accolades are like, as long as my arm and growing and, you know, Jude Chehab is being recognized as a storyteller, as a documentarian, as a filmmaker to watch. And you're being recognized as such from a whole range of places, you know, from the pages of Vogue, to industry insiders. And for that, you deserve incredible congratulations. And Mabrouk. 

Jude Chehab: Thank you so much. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: It also must be like, there's got to come with all this burden of expectation now, right? [laughs] It's like, damn, that first film was really good and everyone loved it. And there's no one who I know who hasn't seen the film who isn't just, you know, elated and informed and nurtured and challenged by it. How are you engaging with this burden of expectation now? Because I know the question that you're probably always asked that they love, you know, post-film panels love. So, Jude, tell us, in the aftermath of the success of the film, where are you going next? What's exciting you? What's the next project look like? 

Jude Chehab: Wow, way to stress me out! [laughs] Just put all my anxieties in one question. Yeah, I think there is. There is a pressure. There's also pressure, I think because the first one was a personal film. So it's like a very different playing field now that the next one, wouldn't be one. Yeah. I think part of it is like not falling into that pressure. I'm in Morocco now. I'm far away from the sound of the industry. And just that question of what's next, what's next? And I think, you know, part of being an artist is taking that time and living and feeling inspired. Like Q came from such a deep need. And I don't feel like I could make something that doesn't come from such a deep need. It is going to take, you know, take five, ten years. It has to be a film that you're like, I have to make this film. I can't, I, I have to. It just comes from such a deep space. So, I'm waiting for that story to come. 


Abdul-Rehman Malik: Jude, tell me about a joy or a meanness that came to you recently as an unexpected visitor. 

Jude Chehab: Hmm. Well, this is very literal, but it's the only thing I'm thinking about right now that came to mind. Yeah. We just moved to Morocco, and, like, you know, the houses here are indoor-outdoor. I'm, like, very scared of animals, but we have birds, sparrows that live in the house now that I have, that are unexpected visitors that I've begun to love. And they wake me up every morning with their song. And, I don't know, just make me feel very connected to nature, and, I don't know, just being present. 

Abdul-Rehman Malik: Jude Chehab, thank you so much for being on This Being Human. 

Jude Chehab: Thank you so much. 


Abdul-Rehman Malik: You can learn more about Jude’s work, and her amazing film, at judechehab.comThis Being Human is presented by the Aga Khan Museum. Through the arts, the Aga Khan Museum sparks wonder, curiosity, and understanding of Muslim cultures and their connection with other cultures. This Being Human is produced by Antica Productions in partnership with TVO. Our senior producer is Imran Ali Malik. Our associate producer is Emily Morantz. Our executive producers are Laura Regehr and Stuart Coxe.

Mixing and sound design by Phil Wilson. Our associate audio editor is Cameron McIver. Original music by Boombox Sound. Shaghayegh Tajvidi is TVO’s Managing Editor of Digital Video and Podcasts. Laurie Few is the executive for digital at TVO.

In this episode, Jude talks about….

  • The first film projects she worked on as a teen. 
  • What she learned from the great director, Abbas Kiarostam. 
  • Her favorite scenes from “Q”. 
  • What it’s like working with family on set. 


What we are lacking is this search for meaning. Finding that in films and that existential view of life that films should always bring up.”

“What I see as cinema and what I want to keep doing is sharing a certain level of beauty and sacredness, and I think that that beauty is what impacts people and makes us feel something.”

“I think it should all be a reminder of something beyond ourselves, I think that’s how I see cinema, something outside of ourselves.”

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