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Ruth & Safiya

Ruth & Safiya is a story about friendships in unlikely places, challenging stereotypes, and the power of community. Ruth, an isolated pensioner, meets Safiya, a teenage Syrian refugee who is haunted by the life she fled from. Filmed on location in Skipton, the story is set in an allotment, showing the power of the earth and nature in creating a bond that transcends age, race and nationality.

  • Louisa Rose Mackleston
  • Louisa Rose Mackleston
  • Louisa Rose Mackleston
  • Simon Beaufoy
    Slumdog Millionaire
  • Stephanie Zari
    Zebra Girl
  • Kelli Hollis
    Key Cast
  • Alison Rooks
    Key Cast
  • Keiva Bhanabhai
    Key Cast
  • Mike Myshko
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
  • Runtime:
    14 minutes 52 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    April 30, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    3,000 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Make:Film Short Film Program
    United Kingdom
    July 25, 2021
Director Biography - Louisa Rose Mackleston

Louisa is a Yorkshire based, queer female filmmaker. After working in the film industry for 4 years as an Assistant Director, Louisa decided to set up her own production company Northern Fortress Films in early 2021. Northern Fortress is passionate about giving a platform to northern voices and creating films about socially conscious issues that affect real people in the North.

Ruth & Safiya is Louisa's debut dramatic short film, made on a small amount of funding given by Bradford's Make:Film campaign. Louisa is passionate about feminism, mental health and shining the spotlight on marginalised parts of society.

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Director Statement

2021 marks a decade since the start of the conflicts in Syria. The displacement of Syrian citizens remains a humanitarian crisis with millions seeking asylum all over the globe. Ruth & Safiya tells the story of a life after conflict, and how Safiya processes the traumatic things she's experienced whilst adjusting to her new foster family.

I wanted to create this story to keep the conversation on the Syrian war alive and to challenge the stereotypical view of asylum seekers that is often portrayed by the British media.
In a post-Brexit Britain refugees are being treated worse than ever by the UK government, as UK citizens we can address this by raising awareness and telling their stories through art whilst demanding changes in legislation and support available.