The upcoming drama film ‘Wild Berries,’ directed and written for the screen by Soudabeh Moradian, has a production timeline commencing in the late fall of 2023 in New Mexico. Based on Naghmeh Samini’s play ‘Language of Wild Berries,’ the movie revolves around Davood and Donya, an immigrant Iranian couple who take an anniversary road trip, only to get mysteriously followed by a stalker.
The long stretches of roads, deserts, and mountains of New Mexico are expected to form the perfect setting for the film. The scenic highways of the state seem appropriate for the road trip the couple takes, which also points to traveling and exploring through the journey that is their marriage. ‘Oppenheimer,’ ‘Breaking Bad,’ ‘Better Call Saul,’ ‘Stranger Things,’ ‘Transformers: Rise of the Beasts,’ ‘No Country for Old Men,’ ‘Sicario,’ ‘Dark Winds,’ ‘Longmire,’ etc. are some of the popular projects filmed in the city.
Moradian is an assistant professor of film at Syracuse University, New York. As an Iranian-American immigrant, she shares her experiences through her films. She is known for works that often feature women’s rights issues, war’s psychological effects, and other social issues. The director is best known for her 2016 film ‘Polaris,’ which is about a war photographer suffering from PTSD. She also directed the documentary film ‘Doomsday Machine,’ which revolves around a war veteran named Mahmood, who believes that he has built a “doomsday machine” that can destroy the world by pressing a button. The filmmaker is currently engaged in the post-production of ‘The Mermaid,’ starring Natalie De Vincentiis.
The award-winning Iranian actor Shahab Hosseini will play Davood in the drama film. Hosseini is well-known for his performances as Hojjat in the Academy Award-winning film ‘A Separation,’ which is also about a couple going through a divorce proceeding, and Emad Etesami in ‘The Salesman,’ for which he won the Best Actor award at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. His other credits include ‘About Elly,’ ‘The Lion Skin,’ ‘After the Incident,’ ‘Any Day Now,’ etc.
Iranian-American actress Sepideh Moafi will play Donya in her first Persian language film. The actress is known for portraying Lauren McCauley in Apple TV+’s crime series ‘Black Bird,’ Loretta in HBO’s historical series ‘The Deuce,’ and Gigi Ghorbani in Showtime’s drama series ‘The L Word: Generation Q.’ Her other credits include Hour Nazari in FX on Hulu’s thriller series ‘Class of ’09,’ Niki in ‘The Killing of Two Lovers,’ Alexis Simms in ‘Falling Water,’ Megan Byrd in ‘Notorious,’ Sofia Darrow in ‘Elementary,’ and Mary Henning in ‘The Blacklist.’
‘Language of Wild Berries’ follows Donya and Davood, a contemporary Iranian couple who sets out to celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary. When a mysterious man starts to follow them, they contemplate the past nine years of their marriage and whether they could save it from a potential divorce. The play explores the intermixing of themes like immigration, marriage, and personal development prevalent not only in contemporary Iranian culture but globally. The story is set on Chaloos Road, connecting Tehran to the Caspian Sea in Iran, within the years spanning from 2006 to 2016. Produced by Golden Thread Productions, the stage performance received many accolades and was turned into a radio play.
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