Sittwe (2017)

Sittwe is about two teenagers separated by conflict and segregation in Burma’s Rakhine state, Phyu Phyu Than, a Rohingya girl and Aung San Myint, a Buddhist boy. Both youth saw their homes burned down during communal violence in 2012.

Phyu Phyu Than is confined in an apartheid-style camp and has no chance to go to school or travel to her home just a few miles away. Aung San Myint’s family struggles to survive and support his high school studies to fulfill his dream to go to medical school.

Interviews filmed over two years with the teenagers reveal their ideas about each other’s communities and the hope of reconciliation.

Sittwe was produced as a tool for facilitated discussions about peacebuilding in Burma. The film was due to premiere in Yangon at the Human Rights, Human Dignity Film Festival but was banned by the government censors.

Broadcast

Festivals

Freedom Film Festival, Malaysia, 2017 Awarded Best Southeast Asia Short Documentary

Hong Kong Human Rights Festival, 2018

Advocacy Screenings

US Mission to the United Nations with UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights to Myanmar, Professor Yanghee Lee

in partnership with American Jewish World Service,  Randall House, US Congress with Congressman Eliot Engel in partnership with the Holocaust Museum and American Jewish World Service

Columbia University, Johns Hopkins University The George Washington University, Stanford University, UC Berkeley, Duke University, Harvard University, Yale University, City College of San Francisco

Film Information

Running time 19:30 (2017) Produced by Smile Education and Development Foundation, Yangon

Director Jeanne Hallacy, Cinematographer Sai Kyaw Khaing, Editor Elizabeth Finlayson

Languages: Rakhine, Bengali and Burmese with English subtitles.

Distributed by Kanopy