The media production city in southern Gaza has taken on the characteristics and features of Jerusalem and its streets spread across 3,000 square metres.
The city was established by Al-Aqsa satellite television and it was made to produce the series “Gate of Heaven”, a drama portraying the lives of Jerusalemites and their daily suffering in this day and age.
Zuhair Al-Afrangi, the show’s director, told MEMO that it took a year to write the scenario and build the city. He says that the series’ events revolve around the lives of Jerusalemites in the Old City and Bab Al-Silsilah, one of Al-Aqsa’s gates.
Al-Afrangi also said that the series will be aired in Ramadan and talks about the Jerusalemites’ defiance and resistance of the occupation and their resistance against Judaisation. It will also discuss how they face the policies issued by the occupation, such as forcing Jerusalemites to sell their homes through tactical indirect means, erecting checkpoints, attacking the elderly and causing harm to the people.
The series will also showcase the role played by the resisting Jerusalemites, as well as the stabbings and clashes occurring at the checkpoints.
Head of the filming department, Ramy Abu Daya, said that the city that has been built is small but this is because the available resources have limited what they have been able to build. However, it has been built to show a variety of perspectives.
Visitors who have visited the city have been amazed. Bara’a Al-Ghalayini, 22, told MEMO she was shocked when she entered the city: “I felt like I was walking in one of the Old City’s neighbourhoods, which we are now prohibited from entering. Only small numbers of elderly Palestinians are permitted to enter.”
“We saw a café with the storyteller telling stories about the Crusades in Palestine, as well as alleyways, rooftops, a barber shop, stores and signs with names of streets we hadn’t seen before. We now have a general idea of what is happening in the city on the ground because it is a copy of what we see on the news every day,” she said.