Deedenow Cinema Production ® Afghanistan,
Remspot Italia and Hazara People International Network
In collaboration with
The Persian Dinner (2015)
A film by M. Amin Wahidi
The Persian Dinner is the debut feature film by the Hazara director from Afghanistan, M. Amin Wahidi who is a political refugee in Italy. It is an independent low-budget film.
This social drama feature film is located in Milan of Italy, the city in which the World Expo 2015 takes place with the hope of economical reinforcement and job opportunities for this city but the event has so far been blended with scandals of corruption and luck of punctuality on completion of the projects.
The story of The Persian Dinner which takes place in one of social centers of Milan, not only pictures the cultural clashes and differences between the native Italians and the newly becoming Italians, but it also points out the Expo 2015 and the scandals behind it; financial corruption on one side and a huge number of unemployment during this grand occasion on the other side.
The Persian Dinner is a film about social classes, integration, racism, friendship, Expo, corruption, love, hate and more than all, the clashes between the old and the new generation of Italian society, nowadays.
Italians are traditionally well known for the concept of family values they keep, while on the other hand “betrayal” has always been a challenge against these values, but are these “family values” still reserved and respected in the contemporary Italy?
What “friendship” could mean in our nowadays contexts, how people “change” in “different circumstances” and how a “cultural clash” could break relationships in an eye-blink, and finally, is “multiculturalism”, as mingle of Europeans with the “non-European newcomers” in this continent “still functional” or is it already “failed”?
They are some of the questions that “The Persian Dinner” tends to bring into the attention of the viewers.
Andrea a theatre actor, son of Cesare Potente, a rich art dealer, with his girlfriend Elena invite his friends in a social center to present a film project and get it produced by famous Milanese producer brothers Stefano and Giordano Lombardo. They also invite famous actor, Marcello Marcelli to convince the producers for the investment, and a relatively famous director of social movies, Guido Tommasi to direct the movie. As a guarantee for the production of the film, Andrea offers to the producers the documents of his father’s museum house inherited from his grandfather.
With the help of their Persian friends Arash, Pari and Mahtab, they prepare an enormous Persian dinner to enliven the night and late everyone enjoy it. But when Arash, Pari and Mahtab get busy in dancing with a Persian music while cooking, most of the food burns and almost nothing remains to serve the invitees. They call a Persian restaurant in the city and order the food.
The food arrives from outside and they all eat well, admiring the Persian girls for their cooking, as none of the guests knows about the fact that they brought everything from outside.
Once the Persian restaurant rescued them from the first disaster of the night but after the dinner, when they are to discuss about the project, there are still things to show up to ruin the night.
By the arrival of Silvia, a friend invited by Elena who hasn’t seen her for years, Stefano Lombardo’s night goes ruined as he faces his ex-fiancée who left him at once and disappeared without any reason, three years ago.
When Rosa, a recently unemployed black young lady enters the social center, where she lives now after she’s lost her job, the famous producer Giordano Lombardo’s sense of racism erupts and began treating her in a bad manner.
And when the discussions reach to Expo 2015, the director, Guido Tommasi who’s famous for films with labor and social issues, takes a position against Expo and there is a fight between him and the producers who are pro Expo 2015.
The writers of screenplay, Azra and Mourad both refugees, and Azra’s girlfriend Laura who are all admirers of Guido Tommasi also take position against the producers and leave the session one after the other.
The atmosphere is still dense and it gets worse when Andrea’s father comes into the social center to tell him an important secret of his life; it is when Andrea discovers the other face of his father, this way, the night goes deeper and darker in the hotchpotch of misunderstandings, betrayals, sense of guilt and sense of revenge, but will all this harshness be erased by the coming dawn or perhaps in continues for ages? Nobody can predict it.
This film is not only the story of a relationship between a father and a son, but it is the tale of two different generations, as well as two different points of views about the world around us.
World and European Premiere
Background and Inspiration
The director of the film, in addition to having a lot of Persian friends in Milan and elsewhere, as a refugee in Milan has come through a long process of integration into his new home, which of course has not been easy and without problems. His social position as a new comer in Italy and his personal experiences through the years of living, studying and working in Italy has inspired M. Amin Wahidi for writing The Persian Dinner.
Deedenow Cinema Production ® Afghanistan
Hazara People International Network (www.hazara.it)
Work in Progress (In Post Production)
The director is a Hazara political refugee in Italy since late 2007. He moved to Italy after he received death threats from the fundamentalists while filming THE KEYS TO PARADISE that would be his debut feature, but he had to leave his country without completing the film and moved to Italy by the help of his friends. Since then, he has been living in Milan, continuing making short films. Before moving to Italy, he has worked as producer/presenter for television programs on ATN (Ariana Television Network) in Kabul- Afghanistan.
Kabul University Cinema-Theatre Department 2003-2006 (unfinished)
Milan Film School Cinematography (2011-2014) (BA)
Director’s Filmography and Works in Progress
1- The Red Shoes (short) 20′ 2003 Kabul- Afghanistan
About: The struggles of Narges, a little girl who doesn’t have shoes to go to school with.
2- Treasure In The Ruins (short) 27′ 2007 Kabul- Afghanistan
About: Homa, seven years old, instead of going to school, looks for treasures in the ruins of Kabul suburbs to cure her sick mother with.
3- Within The Mists (short) 30′ 2011 Milan- Italy
About: Mr. X is an artist (writer-poet-painter) who finds himself imprisoned in a big city and at the end decides to leave the city and its crazy people for a destination he doesn’t know.
4- The Guest/L’Ospite (short) 19′ 2014 Milan- Italy (Winner Venice City Award 2014)
About: A refugee arrives in Venice after three times of deportation to Greece. He is searching for hospitality for one night, but could anyone take home a clandestine newcomer?
5- The Fighter (short) 20′ 2014 Milan- Italy
About: A Hazara former champion of Kickboxing is trying to obtain his glory once again but will he overcome all challenges with all hardships for the refugees in Italy?!
6- La Cena Persiana / The Persian Dinner (debut feature fiction) 105′ 2015 Milan- Italy
About: A young couple organizes a Persian dinner with the help of their Persian friends and invite a couple of producers to get a film project produced, but all goes wrong during the discussions after dinner as different secrets reveal among the invitees one after the other.
7- Manu On The Road (feature documentary) 90 ′ 2016 (in progress) Milan- Italy
About: This feature documentary depicts the artistic evolution and the activities of an artist (singer-songwriter) Manuela Pellegatta who sings and plays on the roads in Milan during the year 2015. It is a testimony on how the singer thrives to get recorded, published and distributed her first album.
8- Tesoro Nascosto (short documentary) 20′ 2016 (in progress) Milan- Italy
About: The activities of an eighty-two-year* old Milanese artist, G.M who still works in this age without getting tired. He has always tried to live a low profile life, keeping himself away from media attention.
9- Twelve Bicycles (feature docu-fiction) 90′ 2017 (in preparation) Milan- Stockholm
About: This docu-fiction pictures some particular, socio-cultural differences between Swedish and Italian societies. This docu-fiction is to be shot both in Italy and in Sweden in the year 2017.
For more information about the film and the director;
Blog: www.aminwahidi.blogspot.com Email: aminwahidi gmail.com