A Rugby Story

Benghazi, Libya | Film Feature

Documentary, Sport

Rashid Kadura

1 Campaigns | Indiana, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $4,160 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

32 supporters | followers

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Support this project to give a human face to those people from a part of the world that have been so dehumanized lately in our own media! This is a story of young people struggling to make their lives better, despite all the odds being stacked against them.

About The Project

  • The Story
  • Wishlist
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Mission Statement

This is a story of young people and their ability to cope in hard times. But, in context of the political setting of this story (Benghazi, Libya), this project allows audiences to empathize with the everyday struggles of those people with whom we tend to hold dehumanized predispositions about.

The Story

Before getting into the film "A Rugby Story," let me begin with the current status of the documentary's production:

Filming is 50% complete. The first phase (May 2016 – November 2016) was following the senior players to Morocco as they formed Libya’s first national rugby team. Unfortunately, due to the politics of both countries at the time, Morocco did not grant travel visas to the Libyan National Rugby Team, and could not participate in the tournament held in Marrakesh. Instead, the team flew to Tunisia and played a a few friendly matches against clubs there. After this, I returned to the United States to work and possibly find funding for the rest of the project. The second phase has yet to start, beginning in April 2017, during which the U19 national team shall be developed and subsequently compete in an international tournament in Morocco. This project, so far, has been completely funded by myself and my (very brief) life's savings.

I have experienced a LOT of resistance and obstacles in terms of the actual production of "A Rugby Story." My time in Benghazi was spent navigating a sloppy martial law, in essence: in most of the city, fighting continues, and in the small half of Benghazi that is controlled by the army, a journalist/amateur filmmaker is not welcome. I have been pulled over at checkpoints literally dozens of times, detained and questioned, and unfortunately have even had my camera and equipment confiscated during my time there, which have been very stressful situations. But I believe in this project, and I intend to go back and see the story to its end.


A Rugby Story

Since the beginning of 2014, the sport of rugby has exploded in popularity in Benghazi, Libya. As a deeply divisive civil war continues within the city, a collection of hardcore rugby players coach and develop young men in regards of the merits and spirit of the sport of rugby, as they themselves put together Libya's first national team, to compete in tournaments in Morocco and the UAE.


We follow the lives of five young men from unique backgrounds for a full year, as they try to balance life, sport, and politics:


Ahmad, national team captain and refugee of the conflict, works full-time at the Red Crescent, and is a youth coach and player.


Sam is a coach-player, and with a deceased father from Guinea-Bissau, deals with racism and his status as a citizen.


Malek and Yasser are rising stars within the U17 age group, and try out for the national team as its youngest players.


Wael is the national team coach, and struggles to come to grips with the extreme changes that have occurred in his life.


This is a film full of frustration, sports action, and textures and scenes unique to Benghazi and Libya.


As per the timing and relevance of the story itself: it’s as if there is a counter-interest, in media and popular culture, to the nationalist wave that has swept Europe and the United States politically (a la Brexit, Muslim 'ban,' etc.); audiences nowadays desire a more nuanced look into the everyday Muslim/brown person's life, which goes beyond entertainment, and into curiosity.


It’s like after so many years of Hollywood typecasting roles of people who look like Salah from “Raiders of the Lost Arc” as terrorists and compliant airline passengers, now we have shows like “Master of None” and “The Night Of” which show Muslims and Arabs as people in more contemporary, normalized roles.


I think one major question that will be asked by an audience/viewer will be, ‘Do I, as a citizen of the West, have the ability to empathize with the people I see in this documentary?’ Simply put, this is a story about young people and their ability to deal in tough circumstances; however, in context of the political settings featured in the documentary, and as well in context of the differences the viewer tends to believe they have with the characters of the film, that recognition of humanity, from the audience to the story, can grow even in a setting of one as controversial as Benghazi, Libya.



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Travel Costs

Costs $2,500

Includes tickets to Tunisia, Libya, and Morocco.

18mm - 200mm Sony Lens

Costs $700

Currently, I alternate between a wide and a long lens, and this causes inconsistencies on many levels. Using one primary lens really helps.

GoPro Package

Costs $450

The GoPro provides an angle that can really add to the feel of the action when worn by a player or referee.

UV Lens + Camera Weather Protection Bag

Costs $350

I've had problems before with sand blowing into/on equipment and getting stuck in there; these purchases will function as cam-protection.

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

About This Team

A background in construction managment and estimation isn't really typical of someone who goes out and shoots documentaries. But, so far, and as far ahead as I have planned, this film has been shot completely by myself, a 25 year-old American-Libyan born and raised in the Midwest. The film is shot in HD, 24fps, on an A7s, an A7s II, and an attached Rode mic; therefore, this documentary is realistically shot, doing without superfluous overhead drone-perspectives and stuff like that.


Current Team