Development Short Film Projects

The City of Ys

Iraq, Jordan, Sweden, France \ Arabic \ 15 min 0 sec


Director: Lana Al Zaidi

Producer: Louise Åberg, Shaker K Tahrer, Huda Al Kadhimi

Production Company(s): Black Bird Film



Ibrahim a 28 years old Iraqi man crosses the sea on a small merchant ship. As the boat is being found by coastguards, he sinks into the water and starts a psychedelic journey that takes him back to his childhood memories in Baghdad. 


Lana Al Zaidi:

Lana Hassan Karmash Al Zaidi was born in Baghdad in 1991. She raised and spent most of her life in Paris. She is half Iraqi and half Lebanese from her mother. She has been working for 8 years in the audiovisual and cinema industry. She works as Production Manager of corporate content for a French company. She formerly worked as Assistant Producer, Assistant Director, and Editor on short films and digital content. Moreover, she volunteers at Ciné-Palestine Festival in Paris, where she manages the short film mentorship program and the video and post-production part. She directed several video clips, commercials, and short videos. She holds a Master’s Degree in Filmmaking and Image Didactics and a Licence in Arabic language, literature, and civilization from Sorbonne University. As an exchange student, she studied for one year at the Cinema department of Saint-Joseph University in Beirut. The short film « The City of Ys » is her first professional experience as a writer and film director. She develops the project since October 2018.



Huda Al Kadhimi:

Is an active Iraqi film producer who started her career in the film industry since 2017. She started her journey in cinema from workshops that were held in the Royal Film Commission in Jordan, from 2006 to 2013. Later, she founded Ishtar Iraq Film Production company in Iraq and Jordan. The company aims to support the local relevant talents and reflect the reality of the Arab World in its projects.

Louise Åberg:

Louise is a trained musical artist at the Ballet Academy in Sweden and The Danish Musical Academy in Denmark. She has worked as a dancer, singer, musical artist, and actor for 30 years. Has worked as a dance, song, drama, and music teacher for over 25 years. As a musical artist, she has appeared in musicals such as Grease, LULU, Nine, Nunsens, and others. In addition to being on stage and teaching, she has directed and choreographed musicals and plays such as OLIVER!, Bugsy Malone, The Wizard of OZ, and others. Louise also worked as a stunt artist and coordinator. Louise writes children’s books and poetry. A great passion is to write about Nordic folklore and nature, preferably in symbiosis. Today she is writing a new screenplay about Nordic folklore. Louise is a producer on Black Bird Film.

Shaker K Tahrer:

Shaker K Tahrer has previously written, directed, and produced the following short films: My Father Doesn’t Cry (Min pappa gråter inte) and Soccer-player at Midnight. The films have competed in several major European film festivals such as: French Clermont-Ferrand, German Dresden Film Festival, Copenhagen Film Festival, and others and have also been shown on the Swedish National Television (SVT) several times.

Shaker’s most recent film is a full-length feature film called Damn Boys (Jävla pojkar) which had its Swedish premiere in April 2012. Shaker wrote the film score/script, directed and produced it and it has competed and been shown at several major film festivals around the world such as: Montreal World Film Festival, Sao Paulo International Film Festival, Bangaluru International Film Festival, Zlín International Film Festival, Bangkok International Film Festival och Brussels Film Festival where the film won the prize for best original score/script with, among others, Peter Greenaway in the jury. The film has also been shown on the Swedish National Television (SVT).

Shaker K Tahrer is educated studied Directing at the Film Academy in Gothenburg Sweden as well as Film Score/Script Composition at Film in WEST (Film I Väst) in Trollhättan Sweden.