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The Perfect Story

La parfaite histoire
Michelle Shephard
2021 | 73 min 40 s
Documentary
Original version in English, Somali and Norwegian with English Subtitles

Teaser


Poster


Synopses

Excerpts

Excerpt 1 - Al-Shabab


Excerpt 2 - Original Story


Excerpt 3 - Close Friends


Excerpt 4 - First Meeting


Excerpt 5 - Canadian connection



Images


Journalist and filmmaker Michelle Shephard with Ismael Abdulle, on his first visit to Canada, looking down at Toronto from the CN Tower’s observation deck

Ismael Abdulle in 2018, in Mogadishu for the first time since the East African terrorist group Al Shabab cut off his right hand and left foot

The Norwegian city of Harstad, 200 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle, where Ismael Abdulle was given refuge in 2011 after fleeing Mogadishu

Ismael Abdulle and Sahal Abdulle

Michelle Shephard and Ismael Abdulle on the beach in Toronto during a visit to Canada

Journalist and filmmaker Michelle Shephard with Ismael Abdulle in Mogadishu

Journalist and filmmaker Michelle Shephard

Mogadishu coastline, Somalia

Team


Michelle Shepphard
Writer and Director, Producer and Executive Producer


Photo
Photo : Jim Rankin




Bryn Hughes
Producer, Executive Producer (Frequent Flyer Films)


Photo
Photo : Johan Hallberg-Campbell




Lea Marin
Producer (NFB)


Photo
Photo : NFB




Anita Lee
Executive Producer (NFB)


Photo
Photo : NFB




Jane Jankovic
Executive Producer (TVO)


Photo



Credits

THE NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA and TVO PRESENT

A FREQUENT FLYER FILMS AND NFB CO-PRODUCTION

Written and Directed by
Michelle Shephard

Produced by
Bryn Hughes
Lea Marin
Michelle Shephard

Executive Producers
Bryn Hughes
Michelle Shephard

Executive Producer, NFB
Anita Lee

Executive Producer, TVO
Jane Jankovic

Independent Production Officer, TVO
Linda Fong

Featuring:
Ismael Abdulle
Sahal Abdulle

Co-Producer and Editor
Nick Hector, BFE CCE

Music Composed and performed by
Justin Small and Ohad Benchetrit
Featuring Esmaeel Abofakher and
Laura Bates on violin

Cinematographer
Wesley Legge

Associate Producers
Sahal Abdulle
Kate Vollum

Visual Researcher
Erin Chisholm

Additional Camera
Iris Ng
Christian Bielz
Steve Russell

2nd unit Camera
Dan Dougay

1st Assistant Camera
Dina Attalla

Sound Recordists
Chandra Bulucon
Dave Draper
Jim Ursulak

Additional Sound Recordists
Nathaniel Gustin
David Best
Brad Dawe
Dane Kelly
Mary Wong

Story Editor
Nick Hector

Post Production Supervisor
Edwin Janzen

Assistant Editor
Alysha Baker

Sound Editing by
SOUND DOGS TORONTO

Sound Supervisor
Nelson Ferreira

Sound Effects Editor
Jack Madigan

Recording Engineer
Spencer Clerk

Studio Assistant
Stefana Fratila

Post Production Facility
REDLAB

Account Manager
Mark Stevens

Head of Post Production
Carmelo Gallé

Sound Studio Manager
Steven Gurman

Project Manager
Jeff Hocken

Colourist
AJ McLauchlin

Re-recording Mixer
Eric Apps

Online Editor
Cory Johnson

DI Conform
Shawn Zacchigna

For the NATIONAL FILM BOARD OF CANADA:
Studio Operations Manager – Mark Wilson
Production Supervisor – Marcus Matyas
Senior Production Coordinator – Katie Murray
Technical Coordinator – Kevin Riley
Studio Administrators – Andrew Martin-Smith, Patricia Bourgeois
Marketing Manager – Melissa Wheeler, Jessica Gedge
Publicist – Jennifer Mair
Legal Counsel – Peter Kallianiotis

Stills Photography
Michelle Shephard

Graphics
Nick Sewell
Sasha Jordan Appler

Production Coordinator
Bryn Hughes

Production Accountant
Dania Kannan

Fixer – Nairobi, Kenya
Benta Ochieng, Viewfinders Kenya

Fixer – Mogadishu, Somalia
Bashir Osman, Peace Hotel

Transcription and Translation
Laurel Toews
Nuruddin Qorane
Astrid Larsen

Special Thanks
Adrienne Arsenault
Nahlah Ayed
Sherien Barsoum
Celena Bell
Lori Chodos
Hannah Donegan
Ilwad Elman
Geoff Ewart
Omar Faroq
Dr. Anthony Feinstein
Mohamed “Tennis” Gilao
Kathleen Goldhar
Abdirashid Hashi
John Haslett-Cuff
Nina Hellvik 
The Hughes Family
Ahmed Hussein
Gwen Joy
Justine Keyserlingk
Christine Kleckner
Todd Light
Lynn McAuley
Kim Nelson
Iris Ng
Deqa Nur
Bashir Osman
Cornelia Principe
Jim Rankin
Randy Risling
Astrid Shau-Larsen
Ann Shin
Asha Siad
Roda Siad
Magali Simard
Jason Statten
Olwen Statten
Tanya Talaga
Sunny Yi
David York
Mahad Yousef
Berkeley Church

International Muslims Organization Toronto
Ishtar Restaurant
Staff and Security at Peace Hotel, Mogadishu
Toronto Star

Archival Footage
Aaron Y. Zelin/Jihadology.net
AP Archive
AP Photo
CBC Licensing
Douglas & McIntyre
F.I.L.M. Archives
From Toronto Star. © 2001, 2006, 2010, 2013, 2014 Toronto Star Newspapers Limited. All rights reserved. Used under license.
Jim Ursulak
Journeyman Pictures Ltd.
Michelle Shephard/Toronto Star/Getty Images
Mustaqbal Media
NRK
Peter Power/Toronto Star/Getty Images
Princeton School of Public and International Affairs
REUTERS/Mowliid Abdi
Screenocean/Reuters
What Took You So Long?
© 2012, Randy Risling/Toronto Star Newspapers Ltd.

Insurance
Lesya Kozoriz, Front Row Insurance Brokers

Legal
Sandra Richmond and Diana Cafazzo,
Stohn Hay Cafazzo Dembroski Richmond

Produced with the participation of
THE CANADA MEDIA FUND,
ROGERS DOCUMENTARY FUND,
ROGERS TELEFUND,
ONTARIO CREATES
AND GOVERNMENT OF CANADA

 

© 2021 2727458 Ontario Inc. and The National Film Board of Canada

 



Press Relations

  • About Frequent Flyer Films

    Frequent Flyer Films is a Toronto-Based production company dedicated to challenging character-driven films that tackle some of the most pressing issues of our time. Founders Bryn Hughes, an award-winning producer and veteran journalist and filmmaker Michelle Shephard, came together in 2018 to create Frequent Flyer Films, bringing with them two decades of experience working in some of the most difficult terrains in the world, with a keen eye to poweful and thought-provoking storytelling.

    www.frequentflyerfilms.ca

  • About the NFB

    The NFB is Canada’s public producer and distributor of award-winning documentaries, auteur animation, interactive stories and participatory experiences, working with talented creators across the country. The NFB is taking action to combat systemic racism and become a more open and diverse organization, while working to strengthen Indigenous-led production and gender equity in film and digital media. NFB productions have won more than 7,000 awards, including 12 Oscars. To access this unique content, visit NFB.ca.