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Jerusalem Documentary Takes San Diego On Eye-Opening Tour

Daniel Ferguson, director, writer and producer of the new documentary "Jerusalem," discusses his film with KPBS Evening Edition host Peggy Pico.

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An Imax film opening Friday at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center tries to move beyond the politics that surround Jerusalem and shows images of the city in a way never seen before.

The 45-minute documentary includes aerial footage of the Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the Dome of the Rock in the Old City. The city of Jerusalem covers a plot of earth less than 50 square miles and yet it dominates headlines, beckons pilgrims and is sacred to almost half the people on the planet.

"Today the walled Old City at the heart of Jerusalem is a mosaic of cultures and beliefs," said the film's narrator, actor Benedict Cumberbatch. "Where Jews, Christians and Muslims live side by side yet in separate quarters, each in their own Jerusalem."

Daniel Ferguson, director, writer and producer of the film "Jerusalem,” chose to focus on the lives of three young women — a Jew, a Christian and a Muslim — in the documentary.

“We wanted to do this in a way you didn’t expect — to make something that is counterintuitive,” Ferguson told KPBS Midday Edition on Wednesday. “By the end of the film, you really have become smitten with these young women.”

Ferguson said most modern-day news surrounding Jerusalem is focused on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but viewers will walk away from the film knowing it’s a “human city.”

“Everyone relates to the city in its own way,” he said. “That’s what gives it so much power.”

Jerusalem

The documentary "Jerusalem" opens Nov. 20, 2015, at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center.

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