Ali Soozandeh’s Tehran Taboo enters production
by Birgit Heidsiek
- In his animated drama, the German-Iranian filmmaker paints a dark picture of the metropolis, a city of prohibitions, draconian dogmas and restrictive laws
For his ambitious debut feature film, Tehran Taboo, North Rhine-Westphalia-based German-Iranian filmmaker Ali Soozandeh is combining some innovative stylistic devices from animation and graphic novels. Shot entirely in a green-screen studio in Vienna with real actors, the authentic social drama will feature animated characters who take a close look behind the moral curtain of the Iranian theocracy. For this animated movie, Cologne-based CGI and animation studio Pixeltruck developed new animation techniques in order to blend real and animated actors with 3D animation and drawings made by hand.
A single mother lives with her five-year-old, mute son in a high-rise area in the middle of the metropolis. In order to pay her rent and for the divorce from her jailed husband, she works as a prostitute but pretends to be a nurse on a night shift. She shares her secret with her pregnant neighbour, a bored housewife, who takes care of her son but also hopes to find a way out of her everyday life. A young music student also lives in the same neighbourhood but gets into trouble after a one-night stand with an 18-year-old virgin.
Tehran Taboo is the first feature-film project by Cologne-based production company Little Dream Entertainment. The German-Austrian co-production is staged in partnership with Vienna-based coop 99, ZDF/Arte and ORF. It is supported by the Film- und Medienstiftung NRW, the Austrian Film Institute, the German Federal Film Fund, Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein, the Vienna Film Fund, FISA and the Hessische Filmförderung. In Germany, Tehran Taboo will be released theatrically by Camino Film.