Footage of ‘Palestinians faking injuries’ comes from film shoot in Lebanon

21 November 2023
What was claimed

Videos of people putting make-up on and directing a little girl on a gurney are evidence Palestinians are faking injuries.

Our verdict

This footage comes from Lebanon, not Gaza, and shows behind-the-scenes preparation for a stylised short film.

Videos and stills showing a little girl on a gurney having make-up applied are being shared on social media with claims they depict Palestinians “faking injuries” in front of the cameras and “fooling the international media”.

One version of the video showing a little girl covered in what appears to be fake blood, with a man holding a camera behind her, has the caption: “This is how the Palestinians FAKE little kids' injuries.”

However, the video is actually behind-the-scenes footage of a stylised short film about Palestinians, which was filmed in Lebanon.

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Where does the video come from?

It’s clear that the stylised film the behind-the-scenes footage relates to was not intended to be a literal depiction of real events.

The film was created by Mahmoud Ramzi, whose TikTok page describes him as a director and photographer, and who appears to be based in Lebanon

The finished video, titled ‘The Reality’ and published on his Instagram page, shows vignettes of protesters, a family celebrating a birthday, some women posing with their phones and the injured little girl—all on the same street—and ends with a violinist playing. 

Reuters and the Associated Press have both reported being told by Mr Ramzi that the film was shot in Lebanon. Full Fact has contacted Mr Ramzi and will update this article if he responds.

In a video shared on both his Instagram page and that of a Canadian influencer, the film is described as “an artistic style video from Lebanon that shows the sufferings of the people in Gaza but in an artistic way”.

The behind-the-scenes footage many are sharing appears to have first been published on 29 October on an Instagram page that has posted other pictures and videos of the little girl on the gurney in the film. Another photo shows her on set.

Other behind-the-scenes pictures from other actors involved, who likewise appear to be based in Lebanon, have also been published on Instagram.

Israeli PM’s spokesperson shared the video

The behind-the-scenes video was also shared by Ofir Gendelman, Arab media spokesperson for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in a now-deleted post on X (formerly Twitter).

His post said: “The Palestinians are fooling the international media and public opinion. DON'T FALL FOR IT. See for yourselves how they fake injuries and evacuating "injured" civilians, all in front of thr [sic] cameras. Pallywood gets busted again.”

We have contacted Mr Gendelman regarding this post and will update this article if he responds.

Pallywood is a portmanteau of Palestine and Bollywood, used by some to describe supposedly staged images and videos of Palestinians being injured or killed by Israeli forces.

Versions shared on Twitter also feature the phrase. One on Instagram has the caption: “And the Oscar goes to…#gazawood”.

We have checked dozens of photos and videos in relation to the recent conflict in Israel and Gaza, many of which are miscaptioned, out of context or depict real events in other places. It’s important to consider whether something is genuine before sharing. Our guides to spotting misleading images and videos should help you to do this.

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