Difference Is Normal
Directed by Rania Rafei
3 MIN / MUSIC VIDEO / 2006 / LEBANON
A unique music video from Lebanon with a universal message of acceptance and tolerance.
Ibrahim, Shafic, Ghassan, Ahmad, Kholood, Hamad, Marwan, Mayssa and Hanadi live their lives despite their disabilities and all they want is to be accepted and respected.The song is about revealing their beauty and overcoming barriers imposed by society in their daily lives.
In March 2006, the idea started; looking for a creative and innovative way to introduce awareness of disability in the Arab World. The idea was to do it through an effective medium and to be able to touch the widest audience with special focus on Arab youth and young adults.
Rap as a style was chosen; a local Lebanese artist was contacted and expressed his willingness and enthusiasm. His name is Rayess Beik. The writing started, followed by revisions and rewriting. The same time the research for the characters started in four countries: Lebanon, Syria, Qatar and Egypt.
In June the first phase of the shooting began, then the war started on July 12 in Lebanon and Egypt. The production had to be dropped. After the war stopped, we got back to work immediately. First thing we did was to re-write the song and include the part about war and disability and the little girl. The 34-day war left a huge toll on the people of Lebanon and the number of people with disability soared.
Working on this project after the war was hard but also a heart-warming experience, seeing how all involved kept a positive spirit about everything despite the difficulties.