Jonathan Keijser on Inspirational Syrian Refugee Story in Peace By Chocolate | Tribeca 2021 [Exclusive Interview]

Peace By Chocolate by Jonathan Keijser

Peace By Chocolate by Jonathan Keijser

With the refugee crisis in Syria for the past decade, many countries unwilling to assist these people due to certain biasness, economics, and fear of terrorism. Canada opened their borders to welcome Syrian refugees, in which it started with hesitation. However, one family arrived to Canada and managed to replicate their formula of Syrian chocolate into a successful national business in the narrative true story in Peace By Chocolate by director Jonathan Keijser.

Here’s the brief synopsis:

After the bombing of his father’s chocolate factory, a charming young Syrian refugee struggles to settle into his new Canadian small-town life, caught between following his dream to become a doctor and preserving his family’s chocolate-making legacy. Based on the internationally recognized true story.

The film stars Hatem Ali, Yara Sabri, Ayham Abou Ammar, Mark Camacho, Kathryn Kirkpatrick, and Najlaa Khamri. Jonathan Keijser directed and co-wrote the story.

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LRM Online’s Gig Patta spoke with director, writer, and producer Jonthan Keijser on bringing this fascinating and lovable true story to the screen. We talked about meeting the real family, the chocolate, the production, and filming in Canada to bring the authenticity.

Jonathan Keijser founded a not-for-profit theatre company for emerging artists in Montreal, Canada, where he directed fully-staged productions including The Woods and Cabaret. His first documentary feature film, What Would Beethoven Do? had its world premiere at the Cleveland International Film Festival and took home an audience award. He directed numerous shorts, including The Notebook, The Boomer Rebellion, Three Dreams, and Bagels in the Blood. Peace by Chocolate is his directorial debut for narrative feature film. Keijser holds degrees in classical double bass performance (Bachelor of Music) from McGill University’s Schulich School of Music and in filmmaking (Masters of Fine Arts) from University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts.

Peace by Chocolate made its premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival 2021.

Watch the exclusive interview with Jonathan Keijser below. Let us know what you think.

Source: LRM Online Exclusive

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Gig Patta

Gig Patta is a journalist and interviewer for LRM and Latino-Review since 2009. He was a writer for other entertainment sites in the past with Collider and IESB.net. He originally came from the world of print journalism with several years as a reporter with the San Diego Business Journal and California Review. He earned his MBA from the Keller Graduate School of Management and BA in Economics from UC San Diego. Follow him on Instagram @gigpatta or Facebook @officialgigpatta.

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