La Sirène

The Siren
1980 in the oil metropolis of Abadan, the largest port city in Iran. Omid, 14, is playing football with his friends when a missile hits a nearby refinery. Within a very short time, this attack by the Iraqi army plunges the city into chaos. At home, Omid catches a glimpse of his older brother getting into a transporter that is taking fighters to the front. His mother has already packed a few things and is ready to flee with the family, but Omid refuses. He and his grandfather stay behind. Too young to take up arms himself, he becomes a provider for a group of others remaining there who are now united in need. He is determined not to give up the search for his brother – and to find an escape route out of the encircled city.
With a meticulous eye for detail in her storytelling and a minimalistic style of animation, director Sepideh Farsi depicts the outbreak of the bloody Iran-Iraq war through one boy’s struggle for survival in a besieged city. Along the way, her protagonist encounters various people who find themselves at a turning point in their lives due to the war and who have to plan their future anew.
by Sepideh Farsi France / Germany / Luxembourg / Belgium 2023 Farsi 100’ Colour World premiere | Animation


Director Sepideh Farsi
Screenplay Javad Djavahery
Animation Zaven Najjar
Editing Isabelle Manquillet, Grégoire Sivan
Music Erik Truffaz
Sound Design Pierre Vedovato, Jeroen Truijens
Sound Nicolas Tran Trong, Luca Theis
Production Design Zaven Najjar
Assistant Directors Yukiko Meignen, Jean-Claude Charles
Producer Sébastien Onomo
Executive Producers Sébastien Onomo, Annemie Degryse, David Grumbach, Vanessa Ciszewski
Co-Production Trickstudio Lutterbeck Köln
Special Touch Studios Marseille
Rêves d'Eau productions Bourg-et-Comin
Amopix Straßburg
Les Fées Spéciales Montpellier
Lunanime Gent
Katuh Studio Berlin
BAC Cinema Luxemburg

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Sepideh Farsi

Born in Tehran, Iran, she moved to Paris to study mathematics but soon turned her focus to filmmaking. After making several short films, in 2001 she directed the documentary Homi D. Sethna, Filmmaker which won several of awards. Her documentaries Harat and Tehran Without Permission both premiered at Locarno, her first two feature films Dreams of Dust and The Gaze at the International Film Festival Rotterdam. The House Under the Water won the NETPAC Award; her most recent documentary 7 voiles received the Grand Prix of the French Competition at the International Film Festival Marseille.


1993 Northwind; short film 1997 Water Dreams; short film 1999 The World is My Home; documentary 2001 Homi D. Sethna, Filmmaker; documentary 2002 Men of Fire; documentary · Le voyage de Maryam (Journey of Maryam) 2003 Khab-e khak (Dreams of Dust) 2005 Le regard (The Gaze) 2007 Harat; documentary 2009 Tehran bedoune mojavez (Tehran Without Permission); documentary · If it Were Icarus; short film 2011 Khaneye zire âb (The House Under the Water) 2014 Red Rose 2015 Spyridoula, God, Marx and Papandreou; documentary 2016 7 voiles (7 Veils); documentary 2019 I Will Cross Tomorrow 2021 Every War is the Same; documentary 2023 La Sirène (The Siren); animation

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2023