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Little Gandhi

Syria’s first ever official selection for the Foreign Language category for the 90th Academy Awards®

The immensely valuable footage of the film was shot under siege and smuggled out of the country. This feature documentary follows the life of iconic Syrian peace activist Ghiyath Matar, who became internationally known as “Little Gandhi” for his initiative of facing down violent government security forces with flowers and bottles of water, inspiring millions of people worldwide.

Matar’s brutal torture and death at the age of 26 outraged the international community and erupted into one of the most violent crisis in modern history.

The film was made to build a better understanding of what the Syrian Revolution is all about and what it stands for. To unveil the truth about the Syrian heroes who first initiated a movement for societal change several years before the Arab Spring. To shed light on these brave activists who in their own words were inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi. To remind the world of lives sacrificed in order to keep the Syrian movement a peaceful uprising in spite of the unprecedented violence by the Syrian regime.

Through “Little Gandhi”, the filmmaker strives to share with the public the lost truth of the Syrian uprising.

“Little Gandhi” was chosen to represent Syria by a committee of Syrian artists
living in exile and, in a rare move, accepted as such by the Academy.

“A remarkable and vitally important film.”
Amnesty International

“Sam Kadi’s work is as heroic as the protagonists of his film.
The feeling that you get…is the strong need to immediately share this story…”
The European Independent Film Festival

“It is a profoundly moving and disturbing film that was produced
in extraordinary difficult and dangerous circumstances.”
Ian Black (The Guardian)

“Little Gandhi is a great example of the power of film…”
France 24 TV (Encore)


Feature Documentary


93 MIN


Arabic, English






Sam Kadi





AWARDS and festival

Excellence in Filmmaking Award at the European Independent Film Festival in Paris
Best Foreign Documentary Award at the 21st International Family Film Festival in Los Angeles
Official selection in the Foreign Language category for the 90th Academy Awards