PEACE BY CHOCOLATE FILM TO DEBUT AT NYC’S TRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL

'I hope this movie is going to change a lot of minds and uplift others, because our story is all about hope'

Ayham Abou Ammar (left), the late Hatem Ali (centre), and Yara Sabri (left) portray Tareq, Assam, and Shahnaz Hadhad in the upcoming film Peace by Chocolate. (ChicArt Public Relations)

The movie based on the real-life story of the family who fled Syria and founded a chocolate company in Nova Scotia will make its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York City.

“[It’s] absolutely exciting, I’ve been dreaming about the movie since it was filmed,” said Tareq Hadhad, founder of Peace By Chocolate.

No one in Hadhad’s family has seen the finished movie yet, though they were involved in consultations throughout the pre-production process, which started in 2017. The film, also titled Peace by Chocolate, is being produced by Magnetic North.

“[They] really put their hearts and soul into making it a very uplifting movie that will hopefully inspire Canadians and the world,” Hadhad said.

Filmmaker Johnathan Keijser is originally from Halifax, but has been based in Los Angeles for almost 10 years. (Allison Chu)

Filmmaker Jonathan Keijser, who was born in Halifax but is now based in Los Angeles, said he “couldn’t be happier” the film will debut at Tribeca — a major international film festival.

“As a storyteller and filmmaker, you want to have the most amount of people see your story. Especially this really important Canadian story,” he said.

It’s important for a festival to be the right fit for the film, Keijser said, adding the team at Tribeca embraced the story and is “making sure it’s a priority to share with everybody.”

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