IRAN, THE UNSEEN WORLD
A Journey to the Unexplored Depth of Iran, Land of Mystic
Film - UK Premiere plus Q&A with Director/Writer
Farshad - Producer, Director, Co-writer, Co-Editor
Persian-born filmmaker began her higher education in Paris,
majoring in French literature at La Sorbonne, prior to receiving
her degree from the L’ Institut Des Hautes Etudes
Film Production and Editing.
She started work as a documentary editor in France,
continuing in Iran, where she received the ABU Award for editing
"The Emigrant Birds" and worked with major award-winning
Iranian and European filmmakers, including the two times Oscar
winning French director, Albert Lamorisse.
was also Associate Professor at the Institute of Film and
Television Higher Studies in Tehran where she taught Montage de
Film. Ms. Farshad served on the selection committee and was a
jury member for the Tehran International Film Festival and also
juried the Sepass Film Festival and CableACE Awards.
1978, Ms. Farshad moved to the United States and continued film
studies at USC. She joined the Editors Guild of America (I.A.T.S.E)
and worked in post-production at major studios, including MGM
and Columbia Pictures, while developing her own documentary
Iran: The Unseen World”, Aryana Farshad’s first full-length
documentary, reflects her life-long passion for mysticism and
spirituality. Ms. Farshad produced and directed the film
entirely on location in Iran and Kurdistan during a nine-month
journey of discovery back to the land of her ancestors.
She gained unprecedented access to people and places
hidden for centuries, filming ceremonies and rituals never
previously recorded. The result is a unique and mesmerizing
personal quest into the heart of an ancient land in search of
Farshad is currently in preparation for her new documentary
film: “Rumi: Consciousness and the Message of Love”, while
continuing work on a book, based on her lifelong spiritual
Balnicke trained in film and photography at the Polytechnic of
Central London and lives in Los Angeles and London.
She has more than 20 years experience in international
documentaries starting with her first job on the staff
production team for Carl Sagan's "Cosmos" (PBS 1980) where she
handled logistics and worldwide locations.
More recently (1996-1999) she held a 3-year tenure as
Director of Specials Development for National Geographic
Television, shaping and guiding projects from concept to
production “green light.”
The long standing Award-winning Specials, airing on NBC
Primetime during this time period, include both natural history
and adventure films such as "Sea Monsters", "Heroes of the High
Frontier", "Ancient Graves", "Avalanche.
Balnicke began producing and directing on the six-hour PBS
series, "The West of The Imagination" (1986). In 1987, she
completed work on "The Hero’s Journey", the film biography of
mythologist Joseph Campbell on which she is credited as
director, co-producer and writer. The independent film premiered
at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, showcased in the
Lincoln Center New Films, New Directors series, was released
theatrically by Landmark Theaters and broadcast by PBS.
In 1988 Ms. Balnicke produced and directed two hour-long
programs sponsored by Kodak and produced by the Smithsonian
Institution in Washington, D.C.