The Urgent Call of Palestine

(Nida Filinstin)

In this short film, Shammout records a solidarity song by the Palestinian Egyptian singer Zeinab Shaath announcing the urgent call of Palestine. The song is punctuated by the words of poet Kamal Nasser, which continue to hold striking relevance today. —Jemma Desai

Director Biography

Ismail Shammout (1930 – 2006, Palestine) was a painter, art historian and filmmaker. He is known as a pioneer of modern Palestinian art. Living through the 1948 Palestinian exodus (Nakba) and facing exile from Palestine, Shammout depicted the many struggles he faced throughout his artistic career. Shammout and his family marched from his hometown, Lydda, to the Khan Younis camp in Gaza when the artist was eighteen. This experience shaped the life of the artist as he became actively involved in regional politics. He graduated from the College of Fine Arts in Cairo (1950) and later from the Academia De Bella Arti in Rome (1954). Shammout was part of the Palestine Exhibition of 1954 in Cairo, inaugurated by president Gamal Abdel Nasser. Shammout became the Director of Arts and National Culture for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in 1965. The PLO awarded him the Revolutionary Shield for Arts and Literature, the Jerusalem Medal for Culture, Arts and Literature, and The Palestine Prize for the Arts. The Arab Thought Forum awarded him The Creative Prize for Arab Painting. An annual prize in his name is awarded for excellent Palestinian painting. His works have been acquired by several Arab and international museums.

Director Filmography

Glows of Memories (1975), The Urgent Call of Palestine (1973)

Production Year



Ismail Shammout



Dialogue Language


Subtitle Language


Primary Contact

Bashar Shammout

Music performer

Zeinab Shaath

Distribution (Worldwide)

Bashar Shammout