Ruaridh Arrow

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Ruaridh Arrow
Occupation Producer and director

Ruaridh Arrow is a British journalist, writer and film-maker known for his 2011 feature documentary How to Start a Revolution[1][2] about Nobel Peace Prize nominee Dr Gene Sharp[3]

In 2012 he won a Scottish BAFTA for New Talent[4] and was shortlisted as Best Newcomer at the Grierson Documentary Awards in London.[5] How to Start a Revolution won Best Documentary at the 2011 Raindance Film Festival in London, Best Documentary and the Mass Impact Award at Boston Film Festival among other awards. The film screened on television in more that 22 countries and became an underground hit with the Occupy Movement.[6]

While filming in Egypt during the 2011 revolution Arrow was detained by Egyptian security services and his camera equipment confiscated however he continued to report for BBC news from Tahrir Square.[7]

The film was privately funded by Ruaridh Arrow and additional funding was raised through the US crowdfunding site Kickstarter. The film raised $57,342 in just under 4 weeks[8] making it the most successful British crowdfunded film currently completed. Several high-profile figures are credited by the producers with supporting the crowdfunding project, including director Richard Linklater and actress Miriam Margoyles.[9] Completion funding was donated by US art collector James Otis who sold the largest collection of Gandhi possessions including Gandhi's iconic glasses and sandals in 2009.[10] Otis stated that he was selling the items to help fund nonviolent struggle projects and is described as the Executive Producer of the film.

How to Start a Revolution was released on 18 September 2011, the day after the first Occupy protests in Wall St, New York. The film was described as the unofficial film of the Occupy movement[11] and shown in camps across the US and Europe.[12][13][14] It was one of a number of high-profile events held in London's Bank of Ideas along with a concert by British Band Radiohead.[15]

In 2012 following the contested Mexican General Election one of the countries largest newspapers reported that protestors were circulating a pirated Spanish translation of How to Start a Revolution which had gone viral in the country.[16] The translation was viewed over half a million times in the space of three days.

A documentary following Ruaridh Arrow's making of How to Start a Revolution, entitled Road to Revolution, was screened in January 2012 by Current TV in the UK.[17][18]

Educated at the Department of War Studies, King's College London[19] and Glasgow University Arrow won British Student Reporter of the Year at the Guardian Student Media Awards[20] and Scottish Student Journalist of the Year in 2004. In 2005 he collaborated with theatre directors Mimi Poskitt and Ben Freedman on a documentary theatre production Yesterday Was a Weird Day about the 7 July bombings in London which featured British actress Charity Wakefield.[21] During the production he recorded what was reported as the last interview with former Foreign Secretary Robin Cook on his resignation over the Iraq War.[22] After training as a newspaper journalist he became a producer at Sky News and subsequently Channel 4's Dispatches programme while also serving as a broadcast consultant to television stations in Afghanistan.[23]

He is currently a Research Affiliate at Harvard University.[24]


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  4. ^,3168,BA.html
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  15. ^ Bank of Ideas
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  17. ^ Road to Revolution Premieres 1 January at 8.30pm (accessed 2 May 2012)
  18. ^ After the screening of the Road to Revolution, the film itself, How to Start a Revolution, was also shown on Current TV: How To Start A Revolution Premieres 1 January at 9pm (accessed 2 May 2012)
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  21. ^ Yesterday Was a Weird Day
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