“ON YOUR RADAR” IS A WEEKLY GRAD FILM NEWS SEGMENT THAT FEATURES A STUDENT PICKED AT RANDOM.
AMIR MOSALLAIE IS CURRENTLY A 3RD YEAR STUDENT AT GRAD FILM. WE ASKED HIM A FEW QUESTIONS, AND HERE’S WHAT HE HAD TO SAY:
1. Where do you consider home and what is it like there?
When I use the word “home,” I'm probably referring to where I'm sleeping that night. If I’m on a trip and say “I want to go home,” unless I'm having an awful time and being a little dramatic, I'm talking about the Airbnb. But there are more romantic insinuations of the word. Many things have felt like home to me, and continue to: the brick house I grew up in in the suburbs of Los Angeles, my parents’ new place a little north of San Diego, my parents, my brother, “Higher” by Rihanna, my West Hollywood one-bedroom, my current room in Bed-Stuy, How to Train Your Dragon, my friends Will and Alex and Daryan, an abandoned lighthouse I slept in one night in 2014 with my friend Gina. Home’s a feeling.
2. What is currently inspiring you as a filmmaker?
In the past I’ve shied from what our teachers call “drama” and “tension.” I think a lot of us early filmmakers do. We’re scared of being too obvious or trite. But for maybe the first time, I’m finding myself inspired and excited by the possibilities of traditional narrative conflict. I’m writing scripts now in which things actually – believe it or not – happen. When my classmates ask what they’re about, I feel myself struggling a little less to articulate them. My characters are yelling. They’re storming out of apartment buildings. They’re breaking promises. They’re breaking hearts. They’re causing scenes. I’m having a good time.
3. What has been your most rewarding experience at NYU Tisch Grad Film so far?
As it is with most things in this life, it’s all about the people. I expected to learn a lot here as a filmmaker, and I have, but anything about this experience that can be articulated is just a by-product of the thing. What I wasn’t prepared for when I came to Tisch was how much I’d grow as a person. Maybe it’s naive not to have anticipated it. I’ve met people here who’ve truly changed my life and, if I’m lucky, will continue to, long after we leave the tenth floor of 721 Broadway.
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