After premiering the film during the Festival de Cannes at the French Riviera Film Festival and winning the Best Experimental Short Film, the film has traveled and be shown in festivals in Los Angeles, New York, Anaheim, Boston, Cape town and so on, but we have to make sure the final screening was in front of our sold out home crowd in Ottawa, Canada.
"Be Your Own Kind" project is delivered in various art forms as a puzzle piece. check out the rest of the pieces of the puzzle here: zargara.com/pages/season-5-be-your-own-kind
A young man meets a woman with an abusive past, they fall in love at first sight, but it all comes crashing down when she meets someone new who brings her back to the dark side.
A discussion with the Writer/Director/Producer, Amir Zargara, and the Cast, Clea Morin, Alee Abozmal, Thobo Mathodi, of the "Be Your Own Kind" Short Film hosted by Jelani Lewis.
This concept originated back in August of last year during my month long annual pop up shop in Toronto. One day, a lady came by my booth to buy a few posters and asked me about the story behind the one titled “Beauty” in which a girl is portrayed whom is full of tears with a butterfly on her head (since she connected with that one the most). I gave her a little bit of the back story and insight into the art like who she was and why was she crying, and that's when she felt comfortable enough to share the ending of her last relationship with me. At the time she had gotten a job at a restaurant which her boyfriend was against; she decided to keep the job but was constantly being verbally abused by him afterwards; that’s when she decided it was time to move on. This might sound like a generic story, but hearing it first hand through her trembling voice and sensing her vulnerability as she struggled to finish her sentences triggered something in me that I had not felt in quite some time. The feeling was so intriguing that I had trouble falling asleep that night. I knew I wanted to make her feel something as powerful as I had felt, which was no easy task. I thought of a way to make my gesture more of an experience than just words or visuals to have the most impact on her. After some research on inspirational quotes about inner beauty, I came across “Be Your Own Kind of Beautiful”. I ended up writing that inside one of my postcards, which has two birds intertwining in the shape of a heart, putting it in an envelope and sealing it. Right before I send it off, I wrote “when it feels like there is no light at the end of the tunnel, please open me” on the envelope; then it was shipped. A month goes by and I finally hear back from her; she had finally opened the envelop after an awful day filled with negative energy. She said the rush of emotions she felt right after she opened the envelop, saw the graphic and read the message inside was something she hadn’t felt in a long time. She felt so thankful for the letter and was so shocked by how something so simple that could seem generic if presented at the right time could have such an impact on her in a positive way and completely change her vibes and re-direct her emotions. After she told me all this, I had no choice but to develop a concept around the pillars of it as I truly felt the need to make as many people feel the emotions that they usually choose to ignore in their daily life. That’s when the "Be Your Own Kind" concept was born. The story intends to take you on an emotional roller coaster with some vague chapters in order to let your creativity fill the gaps within the story and some very specific chapters that will re-direct your emotions and make sure you are on the path that I had hope you would be.
Clea Morin “ABUSED BEAUTY"
Alee Abozmal as “LOVING MAN"
Thobo Mathodi as “MR. K"
Director, Producer, Writer, Costume Design, Production Design, Casting Director: Amir Zargara
Co-director, Director of Photography, Editor: Christian Lat
Composer: Caroline-Jayne Gleave
Associate Producer: Anthony DT
Assistant Camera: Kenneth Empeynado
Assistant Editor: Will smith
Winner of French Riviera Festival Best Experimental Short Film
Winner of Hollywood BLVD Film Festival Best Experimental Short Film
Winner of Anaheim Film Festival Best Experimental Short Film
Winner of Pinnacle Film Awards Best Experimental Short Film
Finalist in American Asian Latino Film Festival NYC
Finalist in TMFF Film Festival
Semi-Finalist in Sands Film Festival
Official Selection of Festival of Cinema NYC
Official Selection of Golden City Short Film Awards
Official Selection of FILM at Downtown Urban Arts Festival (DUAF)
Official Selection of Audience Awards Music Shorts Film Festival
Official Selection of 6 on Nebraska in Cape Town
Official Selection Festival AZYL
Official Selection of Boston Collective Film Festival
Official Selection of Life After Life Film Festival
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