A Project of Representation

From Crew to Cast.

When a young Zoroastrian girl struggles to connect with her recently divorced mother, she begins to look for the "perfect family" somewhere else.

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Few has heard about it. Even fewer practice it. As one of the oldest monotheistic religions in the world, there is a lot of history to explore.

No film is better than its collaborators. That is why casting and recruiting people of color, women, and LGBTQ individuals is a top priority for us.

Synopsis

 

As a Zoroastrian teenage girl prepares for the biggest swim competition of her life, she also struggles with getting close to her recently divorced mother. However, as the Persian New Year approaches, her longing for a perfect family seems to slowly turn her love into resentment. Can both women confront their pain and learn to cherish what they have before it’s too late?

 
 

Director's Statement

 
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When I moved to Los Angeles in 2015 I was constantly asked one question when people couldn’t pinpoint my ethnicity: “What are you?” This question got me thinking about how I am first and foremost a woman. However, when I ventured more into this question I realized that I am a woman of Zoroastrian and Indian culture – and on top of that, heavily influenced by my mother. Most people don’t know much about Zoroastrianism, a dying culture that traces its descendant’s back to Persia. Unfortunately, it is also a culture rooted in patriarchy, and places a lot of judgement on women. But in spite of this, it has also given rise to some truly powerful women, whom despite of opposition and hate prevailed. This is why this story matter, because we need stories of defiance in a world of judgment.

I come from a family of divorce, which makes this project particularly personal. It has always been my dream to shed light on these women who are informed by their culture but have embraced feminism in their own ways. The mothers and daughters who struggle with modernity and the watchful eye of Persian culture. I believe that I have a responsibility to tell these stories and the sacrifices they have made. This movie centers around that - seen through the perspective of a teenage Zoroastrian girl and her recently divorced mother. It will focus on their relationship as it is put to test against the daughter’s upcoming swim meet and the Persian New Year, Navroze.

This slice-of-life narrative focuses specifically on three themes:

1. The influence of Zoroastrian culture on a modern Persian woman and her non-traditional family situation due to divorce.
2. The cultural normality of being overly critical and never truly expressing vulnerability, and
3. The hegemonized mindset that equates having a “full” family with being happy. These themes will be intertwined with accurate representations of Zoroastrian/Persian culture, especially through the ceremony of setting up for Navroze.

There will be examples of culturally significant food and practices at different stages of the script, motivated by narrations in Farsi (Persian language). The primary goal of this project is to therefore entertain and educate a wide audience, while ultimately offering representation in its purest form.

 

Meet the Cast

 

MAUREEN KEDES

Dina

Mekhala Bijawat

Tara

EMMA APGAR

Raina

Shooting in the Heart of LA

Los Angeles is known for its multi-cultural nature, yet few know anything about Zoroastrian culture. We invite you to learn more about one of the oldest monotheistic religions as we go through the various steps of production. 

 

We believe true inclusion begins and ends with a team that understands what representation mean. In this production, women, people of color, and LGBTQ individuals all have a place.

As the project progress, you will be able to follow our work below in the Instagram feed! Keep an eye out for #theskimmermovie