Experiencing Interruptions?

7 Hills

7Hills skatepark in Amman, Jordan has become a utopia for nearby refugees. Given their refugee status after fleeing their home countries because of war, refugees are not considered citizens and therefore exist in the margins of a society. Just like any country, Jordan has its fair share of socio-economic strife but the higher social class has access to parks and recreational choices whereas the middle and lower classes do not. Having grown up skateboarding in Amman, Mohammed knew the importance of providing places for kids to commune and interact. This knowledge inspired him to find a way to build 7Hills Skatepark as a free community space not only for Jordanians but refugees in and around the city.
Skateboarding is not only an inexpensive sport, it transcends racial and gender divides. As one of the greatest skateboarders, Tony Hawk, discusses in the film,, the sport was a way for him to have a place where he could fit in and feel accepted. That sense of being an outcast in society is a familiar theme for skateboarders worldwide and 7 Hills is no exception. Skateboarders include: girls wearing hijab, Syrians, Sudanese, and other refugees as well as locals coming together in the spirit of collaboration, peace and community. People who might not otherwise meet are coming together at 7 Hills for fun and as a reprieve from their circumstances.
Zakaria is deliberate about 7Hills maintaining its status as a peaceful refuge and where kids can be kids and not labeled as refugees who are estranged from their culture and heritage.

  • Jesse Locke
    Radiance of Resistance
  • Rise Up International
    Radiance of Resistance
  • Tony Hawk
    Key Cast
  • Mohammed Zakaria
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Feature
  • Genres:
    Refugees, Skateboarding, human rights
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 13 minutes 34 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 16, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    50,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
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  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Jesse Locke

Jesse Locke is an award winning filmmaker from Bend, Oregon. He has made five short films and one feature length documentary. Each of these films have been officially selected by a number of different film festivals throughout the world. His feature length documentary “Radiance of Resistance” won best in show at the Human Rights Film Festival in Belfast Ireland.

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Director Statement

We are all in this together. The more you know about other cultures the less frightened you become. At the end of the day we are all humans trying to provide for the people we love. My goal in life is to use film as a conduit for change. A collective change in the way we see each other. By giving a face and a voice to stereotypes throughout the world I feel we can begin to break down the walls that separate us all.