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Direction & cinematography: Jan Jaap Kuiper
Production & sound recording: Katja Sokolova
editing: Tim Wijbenga & Jan Jaap Kuiper
sound design and mix: Thijs van der Vliet
color grading: Michiel Rummens
post production: Amator

Small nations, Big games was supported by a Wildcard from the Netherlands Film Fund
Basque Pilota was produced by Submarinechannel in collaboration with broadcaster VPRO

Small Nations Big Games

Joy and tears, hope and despair, fear and excitement. Sport expresses all aspects of human nature. But for the worlds' smaller nations, there is more to it than emotions alone. Small peoples might disappear from the world map - their very existence is constantly challenged by their big brothers. That's why their love for sport goes to a deeper, existential level: the need for recognition and survival as a nation.

Henrike’s father was a champion at BASQUE PILOTA - a game where a small ball, hard as a rock, is thrown against the wall with incredible speed. Will playing his father’s sport help Henrike overcome the frustration of growing up as a Basque boy in the Spanish city of Madrid?

Playing soccer is the most important thing for Neevin, a Palestinian girl. But in PALESTINIAN SOCCER GIRLS we find out the sport also confronts her with a lot of problems: crossing Israeli checkpoints, getting permission to play a game abroad and the Palestinian society frowning upon a girl playing soccer.

Chimit is a proud Tuvan. His people used to freely roam the steps of northern Mongolia, but Chimit’s religion was outlawed in Soviet times, and the Russian border laws make his traditional nomad lifestyle difficult. Chimit hopes TUVAN KHURESH, the traditional Tuvan wrestling sport he is a master at, will help his sons preserve the Tuvan traditions in the face of the all present Russian culture and army.