ABOUT THE MOVIE
Toren is drama film directed and produced by Nawzad Shekhany, who also shot and edited it. Toren, the grandfather, son and grandchild, a three-generation story narrates about a persecuted and endangered people who went through 74 genocide campaigns. Toren, is a story of everyone, who is being forced out of his homeland due to wars, oppression, massacres and had to integrate into a new different society. Toren is a conflict between life and death, a clash of civilizations and religions, and a struggle for survival. Toren is a story about the search of belonging and complete devotions. Toren is today’s Hamlet “to be or not to be”.
The film received acclaim from many of film selection committees, jury committees and critics, with particular praise given to direction, cinematography and editing.
Toren has received a number of accolades from international film festivals. It won Jean Luc Godard Award at Cult Critic Movie Awards an official member of the film society of Lincoln Center, New York, and Award of Merit at IndieFEST Film Awards in San Diego, and Best foreign Feature and Best Cinematography at Hollywood International Moving Pictures Film Festival, and Best Director and Best Editing at European Cinematography Awards, and It also won Golden Fox Award 2019 at Calcutta International Cult Film Festival, and Best Director Award at Alexandria Film Festival, and other awards.
In a desperate attempt to preserve his ancestors’ identity rooted in the Mesopotamian civilization, Toren, the grandfather, fled with his family to Georgia at the time when his people was subjected to genocides. Toren the son, 26-year-old talented painter born in Georgia, faced an unfair confrontation between past and present and with a different society oblivious to his family's customs and traditions. Toren suffered a lot that he rebelled against his own identity, especially when his parents past away while he was still a child. He was thus brought up by his grandparents and older brother, Meraz. His success in painting did not free him from his internal struggle and his fatal illness, which created a conflict between life and death. He suffered from severe psychological isolation, which he could not escape until he met Christian Dr. Eka, 24-year-old, and started to recall his family's advices. Toren’s family decided to return to the land of their forefathers, but fate was on the lookout for a new wave of genocide.
Directed and Produced by: Nawzad Shekhany
Story by: Nawzad Shekhany
Written by: Nawzad Shekhany, Jaso Osmanovi
Starring: Imeda Arabuli, Qristine Chichinadze
Music by: Mohamed Oussama
Cinematography: Nawzad Shekhany
Edited by: Nawzad Shekhany
Production Company: Shekhan Films
Completion Date: 1 June 2018
Running time: 112 minutes
Country: Germany, Iraq
Language: The film is dubbed in Arabic
Imeda Arabuli as Toren, the talented painter
Qristine Chichinadze as Eka, the doctor
Zurab Tsintskiladze as David, Eka’s father
Levan Kipiani as Zurab, Torn’s manager
Jaso Osmanovi as Meraz, Torn’s brother
Levan Janelidze as Koka, Torn’s best friend
Nata Guliashvili as Teona, Zurab’s girlfriend
Nata Manjavidze as Dr. Nata, Eka’s friend
In 1 February 2016, it was announced Nawzad Shekhany resumed work in the film’s editing after it has stopped more than a year because of the genocide inflicted on Yazidis by ISIS on 14 August 2014 in Iraq and his preoccupation in a film project The Black Massacre The documentary film about the genocide, also it was announced Nawzad Shekhany had acquired copy rights to the film Toren. An official trailer was released on 24 April 2018.
ARAB AND AFRICAN PREMIERE
The Arab and Africa premiere was at International Arab Film Festival of Meknes on 20 July 2019, where it won Grand Prize Award.
MIDDLE EAST PREMIERE
The film had the Middle East premiere at Alexandria Film Festival on 13 October 2019, where it won Best Director Award.
On 2 October 2013, it was announced that Nawzad Shekhany would produce and direct a project focusing on a genocide campaign against Yazidis, and who is being forced out of his homeland due to wars, oppression, massacres and had to integrate into a new different society. The film was shot between Georgia (Tbilisi, Batumi) and Iraq (Lalish Temple).
The film script was written by Nawzad Shekhany, Jaso Osmanovi in Cologne, Germany and was updated in Tbilisi, Georgia.
The film had its world premiere at Hollywood International Moving Pictures Film Festival on 3 May 2018, where it won Best foreign Feature and Best Cinematography.
The international premiere was at Calcutta International Cult Film Festival in India on 26 August 2018, where it won Best Film on Religion, Outstanding Achievement (Director), Outstanding Achievement (Feature Film). The film is nominated for the prestigious Golden Fox Awards 2019, where it won the Award at the annual live screening gala of CICFF, on 16thJanuary, 2019 at Rotary Sadan, in Calcutta.
The film also had national premiere at the National Theater in Baghdad, Iraq on 25 December 2018, where the Director and producer Nawzad Shekhany crowned with the Iraqi Cinema Shield (Winged Bull).
OSCARS - IRAQ OFFICIAL NOMINEE
The film was nominated for an Academy Awards (Oscars) 2020, in the name of the Republic of Iraq.