May’s Online Short: Chika, the Dog in the Ghetto

Filmmaker Sandra Schießl recreates experiences of the Jewish ghettos through imaginative animation and design.

In May’s Online Short, filmmaker Sandra Schießl recreates experiences of the Jewish ghettos through imaginative animation and design. Chika the dog and the five-year old Mikasch live in a Jewish ghetto in an unnamed Polish city. The little dog helps Mikasch to develop as a child despite the persecution of the Jews by the Germans.

Dir. Sandra Schießl, Germany, 2017, 15 min, Animation

Read a Q&A with director Sandra Schießl below:

JFI: What inspired you to make this film?

Schießl: That inspiration was Batsheva Dagan and her lifelong commitment to the next generation’s historical education.

JFI: What was your greatest challenge during the filmmaking process

Schießl: To find a design concept, that is historical, sincere and entertaining at the same time.

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JFI: Any thoughts you’d like to share about screening this film in a Jewish context?

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Director Sandra Schießl

Schießl: I hope very much, that this film can be used also in Jewish schools to start talking about what happened and how tolerance has to lead our way into the future.

JFI: What film/media has inspired you lately?

Schießl: Isle of Dogs by Wes Anderson.

JFI: What do you do when you’re not filmmaking?

Schießl: Spending time with my two sons, gardening, playing the fiddle.

JFI: Lastly, gefilte fish: delicious, or disgusting?

Schießl: Never tried it, sorry. What is it filled with? But I love fish, so as long as it is not left in the ground to rot or something similar, I probably like it.

Each month, the Jewish Film Institute presents a new free short film to watch online from emerging voices in Jewish documentary, narrative and experimental filmmaking, accompanied by an interview with the film’s director. To watch more JFI Online Shorts, visit the archive of free films here.

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Inspiring communities to expand their understanding of Jewish life through film, media and dialogue. Presented by the Jewish Film Institute! www.jfi.org

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