Uncommon Union co-produced On Her Shoulders, a documentary about Nadia Murad, in cooperation with longtime partner RYOT News. Murad is a 23-year-old Yazidi survivor of genocide who went on to win the Nobel Peace Prize. Uncommon Union came to meet Murad through its advocacy work supporting the Yazidi community in 2015. After several trips to Iraq and refugee camps in the Middle East to support information-gathering efforts, Uncommon Union approached RYOT as part of a campaign to raise awareness of ongoing human rights violations.
The film tells Murad’s story and documents how repeating it to politicians, the media, and the UN to little effect takes a toll on her personally. As an ordinary village girl, Murad is thrust into an international spotlight. She must learn to navigate bureaucracy, fame and people’s “good intentions,” in the interest of justice and her struggling community.
The film was shorted listed for the 2019 Oscars and won the U.S. Documentary Directing Award at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. Its North American rights were subsequently acquired by Oscilloscope Laboratories.
The Nation | ‘On Her Shoulders’ Honors the Courage and Tenacity of Nobel Peace Prize Winner Nadia Murad
Democracy Now | On Her Shoulders: Stunning Film Follows Nobel Peace Winner Nadia Murad’s Fight to End Sexual Violence
New York Times | These Movies Haunted Me at the Human Rights Watch Festival
Variety | Film Review: On Her Shoulders
The Week | How the biggest movies of Sundance 2018 went small
Deadline Hollywood | How the biggest movies of Sundance 2018 went small
The Hollywood Reporter | On Her Shoulders': Film Review | Sundance 2018
LA Times | A look at Sundance Film Festival’s stronger than usual 2018 lineup