Diamonds Backpacks and a Matchbox 02

Festival / Official Selection 2018 / Diamonds, Backpacks and a Matchbox


Diamonds, Backpacks and a Matchbox

DIRECTOR : Amirah Tajdin
COUNTRY : UAE, UK, Kenya, Jordan
YEAR : 2018
TIME : 72 min

Nu Metro 5, 18 Oct @ 10am | Nu Metro 6, 10 Oct @ 5pm


It’s been over six years since the Syrian revolution. In this lyrical homage to the pains of plight, Diamonds, Backpacks and a Matchbox chronicles the ongoing aftermath of the revolution, recounted by some of it’s ‘survivors’. These survivors, known to us simply as Syrian Refugees, recount their personal upheavals and hopes, both on an emotional and physical scale. In doing so, they piece together one of history’s (on going) darkest chapters, from a first hand experience. Thus becoming the testaments of a displaced nation, a portrait of Syria, from inside refugee camps across Jordan and Lebanon, which were filmed over the months of December 2016 to January 2017.

Amirah Tajdin_


Amirah Tajdin (1986), is a Kenyan artist and filmmaker. She graduated from Rhodes University with a Bachelor of Fine Art (Photography) in South Africa and Goucher College Maryland (USA). She is most recently a Sundance Institute Fellow having participated in both the Director’s Lab in 2018 and the Screenwriters Lab in 2017 in Utah with her feature film project Hawa Hawaii set in the Swahili community of Mombasa, Kenya (currently in development).

She splits her time between Africa and the Middle East balancing freelance commercial directing work as well as independent fiction and documentary both locally and internationally.

Her co-directed short, Marea de Tierra (2015) premiered at the Cannes Director’s Fortnight as part of the Chile Factory Residency. The film was also part of Sundance Film Festival in 2016 under the International Shorts Program and went to play over twenty film festivals globally. She has written & directed numerous visual pieces. Fluorescent Sin (2011) and His To Keep (2013) both short films, played various festivals, with Fluorescent Sin garnering Jury Special Mention awards at the Zanzibar International Film Festival and Film Africa London.

Commercially, Amirah has directed both TVC and branded content campaigns for Bloomingdales, Cadillac, Virgin Mobile, Louvre Abu Dhabi, Pepsi, Meraas, Vogue Arabia, Lenovo, Namshi, Level Shoes and more.

She also forms the creative half of SEVEN THIRTY Films an Africa based indie production company, which she founded in Nairobi in 2011 alongside her sister, producer Wafa Tajdin.