Thursday, October 07, 2004

Osama and Us - A Channel4 Docu pitch

Directors: Jamie Cambell and Joel Wilson
"Over the last 15 years, the United States government has poured billions of dollars into an unsuccessful attempt to trace and capture thw world's most wanted man, Osama Bin Laden. The FBI is now offering $25 million plus a $2 million tip for information leading directly to Bin Laden's capture. Still, the al-Qaeda figurehead remains at large. In early 2003, from their war room above an inauspicious newsagents in Balham, two ambitious filmmakers have decided that they can succeed where all others have failed.

Gathering information from exprts and friends of Bin Laden in the UK, we begin to unravel the real man behind the myth. Bryan Fyfield Shayler, the Brit who taught the teenaged Bin Laden in Jeddah, tells us about his formative years. Omar Bakri a radical Islamic extremist who is friends with Bin Laden, joins us on a bumper car ride and gives us an indication of Osama's current location. Peter Juvenal, a British cameraman who has visited Bin Laden in his cave, shares his experience. Omar Bik, the head of al-Jazeera news, gives us an upto the minute account of Bin Laden's whereabouts. We examine the details of the times Bin Laden spent in London and reconstruct an Oxford scene from 1971 in which he went punting with two Spanish girls. Jamie dresses as Osama and accompanied by two Spanish looking girls heads off in a punt. Joel remains on shore questioning passers by. Were they here in 1971? Did they see the man on the punt? Did he offer them any virgins?

back in the war room, we establish that the evidence overwhelmingly suggests that our man is hiding in the Middle East. If so, why haven't the American found him yet? Why are they pushing him out of the picture just as war with Iraq looms? We need to ask the Americans these questions. We call Osama Bin Laden's bluff and make a beeline to the one place where no one thought to look for him: the United States.
We challenge the Americans to present evidence of their quest to track down Bin Laden. In Washington we quiz Thomas Kean, the man who replaced Henry Kissinger at the head of the enquiry into September 11;as well as Prince Bandar, the Saudi Ambassador. We call directory enquiries and ask for the Axis of Evil. We ask the White house if there is convenient moment for us to 'shoot' George Bush. In Disney worls we cross examind Mickey Mouse. And when we begin to suspect that the American aren't really interested in finding Osama any more, we head over to texas where we probe the Carlyly Group, the 11th largest weapons manufacturer in the U.S. The bush family is a major investor. Does Georgie have a vested interest in war? The bin Laden family are also investors. What's going on?

Becoming suspicious of Bush, we start to develop some conspiracy theories. Does he know
where Osama is? We stalk his ranch in Crawford, and banter with the inhabitants of this 700-strong town. Failing to locate the President, we arrive back in Washington and infiltrate the press conferances. It is here that we put our most pressing questions to the powers-that-be."Isn't it in US interests to keep Bin Laden alive inorder to justify war against Iraq?" and "which is more difficult to prove :that
there are no weapons of mass destruction within Iraq, or that Bin Laden is not hiding in the USA?"

Evidence in hand, we arrive at the U.S Embassy in Governor Square, ready to claim our $27 million. And yet afterall perhaps, we are not quite willing to betry Bin Laden to U.S authorities.

Osama and US calls into question the idea that America and Britain are spearheading a resistance by the good and the great against the terror tactics of the evil ones. By asking uncomfortable questions of the superpower, it satirises the people at the top who believe that they are on the road to Truth and Justice. And by putting blundering underdogs into apparent danger and tricky intellectual territory, it cajoles the viewer into supporting their madcap quest for the millions. "


MMN said...

I read it as "Osama and Us", and was thinking We have no relation with Osama, unless we are Afghanis :). Don't bother changing the title or Brajeshwar will come back :D

Very nice read.. Took a while though.

Arunima said...

:-) MMN

Brajeshwar said...

LOL! That was a cool punch line and it really hits below the belt.

Stone said...

'm enjoin the comments :-)

manuscrypts said...

quite obvious that there shd be a link... in fact there has to be some conflict somewhere so bush can keep attention away from his idiocies!!

s! said...

interesting, very interesting. have you watched 'Fahrenheit 911'?? that wil give you some more perspectives into this too..