September 25, 2022

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Iranian filmmakers cover selfless devotion of coronavirus frontline workers

TEHRAN – Iranian documentarians Javad Yaqmuri and Mehdi Amini have teamed up to make a feature-length documentary and a number of shorts on coronavirus in the Kamkar Hospital in the city of Qom, where the first cases of the new virus infection in two Iranian men were reported.

“When the cases of the new virus were detected in Iran, people were terrified and rumors were going around, so we decided to show the people what is really going on,” Yaqmuri told the Tehran Times on Wednesday. 

“We first intended to make only a feature-length documentary, but when we got to the hospital, we found out there are lots of individuals and subjects in the hospital that can be dealt with in short documentaries,” he added.  

Dozens of short documentaries focusing on various persons in the hospital, including doctors, nurses and other medical staff and volunteers and even three patients, have been made and broadcast from several IRIB channels over the past few weeks.   

Amini also said that when people around the world are facing a serious crisis, filmmakers have an obligation to record events, sacrifices and emotional moments for the future.  

“Documentarians need to be prepared for any situation. They sometimes make documentaries about happy and harmless events and sometimes, they have to cover hazardous, difficult and tragic situations,” he noted. 

“When medical staff members are working every day without even a single day off, facing danger and are engaging in hard work, it isn’t fair that their efforts are not acknowledged by being recorded in films,” he added. 

Amini also mentioned that the documentaries show the relationship between patients and medical staff, and some rare emotional moments that occurred at the hospital rather than providing just scientific information about the disease. 

“There is no place for showing off or anything like that. It is a matter of life and death. We have followed them right into the heart of danger,” he said.

Some of the medical staff members haven’t seen their families, their children or their parents since the coronavirus outbreak in the country.  

“The sacrifices they make and hard work they do are priceless,” he concluded. 

Photo: Javad Yaqmuri (L) and Mehdi Amini record short documentaries on coronavirus at the Kamkar Hospital in Qom.

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