“Sorry I Drowned” is inspired by a letter allegedly found on the body of someone who drowned in the Mediterranean Sea, due to the prevailing cynical politics of our day. The truth behind the authorship of the letter, however, remains unknown. Nevertheless, Doctors Without Borders, who produced the film, believes that this reality of refugees cannot continue.
It has been two years since Doctors Without Borders started conducting search and rescue activities, and in 2016, it rescued more than 20,000 people. In the film, the humanitarian organisation called for safe and legal alternatives for those ‘desperately escaping poverty, war and instability.’
According to the United Nations, over 1,600 refugees have already died crossing the sea in 2017. More than 71,000 migrants have travelled across the Mediterranean to Europe in just the first six months of the year. This animated film is a graphic description of a letter from a child to his mother, and describes what happened to her as her passage failed.
In 2016, MSF’s Beirut/Cairo communications hub commissioned Studio Kawakeb, a Lebanese digital animation studio, to produce an Arabic animated film based on the letter. It took almost a year to finalise the product with the quality and effect necessary. On May 31, 2017, the film was privately screened at the Dar el-Nimer for Arts and Culture in Beirut to an audience of journalists, activists, influencers, artists, and others, complemented by a discussion about the two key questions we are asking: How far would you go for a dignified, safe life? And what reception would you expect?