Enigma: Al Mayadeen's documentary on Cuba's history, revolution
Al Mayadeen presents the documentary series Enigma which documents the most significant moments in Cuban history prior to the 20th century and narrates Fidel Castro and his comrades' waging the final battle for Cuba's true independence and building the revolution, up to the present day.
With the aim of defining the Cuban Revolution and consolidating its meanings among the Arab and Islamic communities in West Asia and the world, Al Mayadeen presents Enigma, a documentary series produced and prepared by the Network, in cooperation with a Cuban team, headed by the Production Team Lead Arleen Rodriguez Derivet and Director Michael Porto, under the supervision of Wafiqa Ibrahim, the director of Al Mayadeen Español.
The series is composed of five episodes and will be broadcast starting January 15, at 9:00 pm Al-Quds time. The episodes will present the audience with a closer look at the history and struggle of the Cuban island and its people, starting from the 14th century to the present day.
Today, we're getting to know the island that earned its freedom after 30-years-long fight. The first episode of #ENIGMA | The #Cuban Revolution will be out tonight at 21:00 Al-Quds time on #AlMayadeen. pic.twitter.com/v2hYkVoIXt— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) January 15, 2023
In order to get a feel of the hurdles of presenting an image that reflects the heroism of the Cuban people, both Arleen Rodriguez Derivet and Michael Porto relayed the techniques and tools employed in the documentary.
The series was a big challenge for Derivet, as she explained, asserting that ever since the major questions were asked, such as, what is the mystery of Cuba? and how was Cuba able to resist all these long years of blockade, years of aggression, and economic war? The answer was lucid from the start: "The mystery lies in history, and it must be sought in history."
"#Enigma is not only to commemorate history; it is also [a message] for the present."— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) January 15, 2023
Learn about how the #Cuban people have been and are still fighting the ghost of colonialism, which, to this day, looms over the island. Tonight at 21:00 on #AlMayadeen. pic.twitter.com/lN4vwM5E9b
"This was Al Mayadeen's vision, as the Network presented the idea of creating a documentary series on the history and 'mystery' of Cuba, the Cuban resistance, and the basic resources needed to accomplish this; therefore, we owe it everything," the Cuban journalist commented about the importance of Al Mayadeen bringing to light such a project.
Regarding the essence of the Cuban Revolution, Arleen Derivet said that the history of Cuba as a nation could be written with the emergence of the criollos, "who began to think as citizens and not as children of Spanish fathers and African mothers, or of different nationalities who flocked to Cuba until they later became Cuban citizens."
"All of this has been written in the history of Cuba and present in its literature since the first texts. Every story, whether literary or about the history of Cuba itself, has always been accompanied by an essential component: it is called resistance," she added.
"We can say that the resistance in #Cuba has become a culture, a principle, a way of thinking, and a way of life."— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) January 14, 2023
Don't miss the first episode of Enigma | The Cuban Revolution tomorrow, at 21:00 PM Al-Quds time on #AlMayadeen. pic.twitter.com/lo6hvrLMIX
For his part, Cuban Director Michael Porto said that "producing a series like this and preparing an audiovisual project of this size is primarily an opportunity that many producers aspire to and is a dream for many directors."
"The history of Cuba, the history of our country, has different narratives," and the challenge was to "find a somewhat innovative way to tell this history in a creative way."
He went on to say that he believed that their first idea was to meet modern visual standards and to approach the perspective of younger people, "who, in my opinion, constitute an important audience these days, but there was another, greater and more important challenge, which was to reach an audience that is not Cuban and even not Western, but rather an Arab audience that does not know much about the history of Cuba. Therefore, it was a great challenge for us to condense into five episodes the very long historical period in which many events took place."
How did #Cuba break the shackles of colonialism and emerge as a homeland for the #Cuban people?— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) January 14, 2023
Watch the first episode of #ENIGMA | The Cuban Revolution tomorrow at 21:00 Al-Quds time to know more. pic.twitter.com/ImxnuOfJk9
"To approach an audience that knew nothing of our history more than the well-known characters of Fidel and Che Guevara, was a real challenge," Porto said, stressing that this must be done based on the principle of historical integrity, "and therefore we turned to people who studied and narrated history over many years, and with their credibility, we narrated this history."
The island of #Cuba earned the title "The Key to the Gulf" because of its significant geopolitical location at the entrance to the Gulf of #Mexico.— Al Mayadeen English (@MayadeenEnglish) January 13, 2023
Stay tuned for the first episode of the documentary on the #Cuban revolution, ENIGMA.
Sunday at 21:00 Al-Quds time on #AlMayadeen. pic.twitter.com/M1zB4Q6x0C
"This history was not invented by us, this history is written, it is made by heroes and martyrs from this country, and what we tried to do was to find an innovative and contemporary way to be able to narrate it through a timeline entitled "Unlocking the Mystery of Cuba", because Cuba, is seen as it is today, and Cuba, unlike all expectations, and despite all the difficulties and challenges, Cuba will remain resilient."