We are very excited about the imminent release of two documentary films we’ve been working on since the beginning of the project. Painstakingly produced by the Italian film company Terra, the films will play a vital role in supporting our education and outreach efforts. Finishing touches are being put on them now and we expect both films to be released by the end of February, 2020. (When the films do come online, GREASE Newsletter subscribers will receive special notification with instructions on how to access them.)

What are the two films about?

With a running time of just under one hour, Religion and Society stretches across multiple countries, faith communities and age groups. It features interviews with people in distinctly different cultures, offering intimate portrayals of lived experiences of religion. The 12 interviewees in the film explain the role they see religion playing – positive or negative – in their individual lives and societies. Overall the documentary provides a compelling mosaic of minority-majority relations and the challenge of governing religiously diverse societies.

Countering Religious Extremes addresses the vital tasks of preventing and countering religiously inspired or religiously attributed violent radicalisation. Just under 30 minutest long, it looks at examples of organizations effectively engaged in this effort in multiple cultural settings. While exploring what kind of measures are useful, the film also looks at what counts as success in combating violent extremism and how religious figures can play an important role in combating it.

The making of these films involved extensive travel. The Terra production team visited a total of seven countries from Hungary and Morocco to India and Australia.