NRI director- Mira Nair

Mira Nair

English and Hindi director born in Bhubaneshwar, Orissa; daughter of a civil servant. Educated at the Irish Catholic School in Simla and at the University of New Delhi. Active as an actress in repertory theatre in India. Went to Harvard (1976) where she graduated in sociology (1979). Started making films in the USA for R. Leacock and D.A. Pennebaker. She has produced her own films and achieved international success with India Cabaret and Salaam Bombay. She is now based in the US.

NRI director Mira Nair's short film on September 11, based on the real life incident involving an American Muslim boy, will be among the opening fare at the 8th International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK), starting here later this week.

Nair's film was part of a series of 11 short films by leading directors from different countries on the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and other US landmarks on September 11, 2001. The collection of 11 films, each of the duration of 11 minutes, nine seconds and one frame (11'9"01), was a talking point at the Toronto and Venice film festivals last year.

Mira Nair's vignette dramatises the real life story of Salman Hamdani, a Muslim American medical student who went missing in New York City after the attack and later became a terrorist suspect. The all-American upbringing of the boy came to naught as his family saw neighbours and friends turn against them. Finally, it turned out that Salman had died helping people out of the World Trade Center tower that day. The members of the youth's family took part in the film.

Nair was later quoted as saying that she wanted to make a film about the reality of life for South Asians in New York City after September 11. ''Life has changed irrevocably, and I think forever. From New York to Jenin to Gujarat, the Islamophobia that has taken over the world disturbs me immensely. As a filmmaker, I thought it was about time we spoke up," the director of such popularly acclaimed films as 'Salaam Bombay' and 'Monsoon Wedding', told an ethnic Indian newspaper in the US.

While Mira Nair's short feature will share the honours with the Turkish feature film ''Encounters'' as the opening movies of the week-long IFFK, starting on December 12, the NRI director herself would not be present at the festival, sources at the Kerala State Chalachitra Academy, the organisers of the festival, told UNI.

  • Accomplished Film Director/Writer/Producer Mira Nair
  • Mira Nair on the set of Monsoon Wedding
  • Kama Sutra
  • Mississippi Masala
  • Salaam Bombay
  • The Perez Family

    The Impressionist 2005
    Homebody/Kabul 2004
    Vanity Fair 2004
    Still, The Children Are Here 2003—Documentary, 85 minutes, 35 mm
    11.09.01 2002—Fiction, 11 minutes, 9 seconds, one frame, 35mm
    Hysterical Blindness 2002—Fiction, 97 minutes, 35mm
    Monsoon Wedding 2002—Fiction, 113 minutes, 35mm
    The Laughing Club of India 2000—Documentary, 36 minutes, 16 mm
    My Own Country 1998—Fiction, 100 minutes, 35mm
    Kama Sutra : A Tale of Love 1996—Fiction, 112 minutes, 35mm
    The Perez Family 1995—Fiction, 106 minutes, 35mm
    The Day the Mercedes Became a Hat 1993—Fiction, 10 minutes, 35mm
    Mississippi Masala 1991—Fiction, 113 minutes, 35mm
    Salaam Bombay! 1988—Fiction, 113 minutes, 35mm
    Children of Desired Sex 1986—Documentary, 30 minutes, 16 mm
    India Cabaret 1985—Documentary, 58 minutes, 16 mm
    So Far From India 1983—Documentary, 52 minutes, 16 mm
    Jama Masjid Street Journal 1979—Documentary, 18 minutes, 16 mm