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Art & Life with Rana Ghiassi

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rana Ghiassi.

Rana, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
When I was 12, I made the move from Iran to America not knowing a lick of English. I faced 13 challenging years before fully adapting to the new environment/culture. In middle school, I was bullied. In high school, I fell under the peer-pressure of “fitting-in”. Then in college, right when I was about to drop out, a counselor advised me to change my major from Communications to Television and Cinema Arts. Almost immediately after that switch, my life began to gain color. I was finding myself through writing and acting, and upon graduation, I finished a feature film length screenplay called “Les Filles”. 6 months (of tears, blood, and sweat) later, I had a film and a fully booked theater for my premiere. Later that year, Les Filles won best feature film at IFS Film Festival, and my itch for filmmaking began.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I’m ALWAYS writing and coming up with film ideas in my head. My biggest self-notes are to try my best, stay relevant, and provoke the audience in a new type of way. I think it’s better to dive in without letting any setbacks of “is this lame?” “Has it been done?” “Are people gonna like it?” getting in the way. Just dive baby.

I’m currently in the post-production phase of my documentary “10 Days Without You”- which is about four strangers (millennials) that embark on a 10-day journey through 5 states (California, Nevada, Utah, Idaho, and Oregon) without the use of their phones or any source of technology. (Paper maps, pay phone, and all that old time jazz)

I HATE SOCIAL MEDIA (sometimes) and think this obsession with scrolling needs to be talked about. Boy oh boy, this documentary does more than just talk about it… Let me tell you that.

I’m looking forward to my next project (a short film) that’s currently titled “Burning of the yellow dress” (but that’ll change–it always does).

I want my films, my writing, my acting, to not only be relatable for people but also create a sense of relief that they’re not entirely alone in this life thing.

What responsibility, if any, do you think artists have to use their art to help alleviate problems faced by others? Has your art been affected by issues you’ve concerned about?
The role has definitely changed. I mean just for filmmakers alone it’s totally put a toll on their storytelling, and I think it’s given us an urgency to focus our stories around the issues of today. It’s our duty to tell the stories like it is and if we don’t bring solution through our picture, then at least we bring awareness. Art and in this case a visual medium (movies) should not only reflect but alert our people of what’s going on and if it doesn’t then what good is it?

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
Instagram: @10dayswithoutyou

I recently deleted my personal page (not a huge social media gal) but going to try to get back into it because it seems to be the modern way of collaborating.

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