Skip to content

BUBJAN in the festival circuit

Inspired by hours of in-depth interviews by Humans of New York creator, Brandon Stanton, and directed by Emmy-nominated filmmaker, Nicholas Mihm

‘Bubjan’ chronicles the journey of Parwiz Zafari, a former member of the Iranian parliament who dedicated his life to cultivating a progressive, modern, and free society in Iran. However, the rise of the Islamic Republic eclipsed those aspirations, and forced him to leave behind everything he knew.

During the production of ‘Bubjan’, on September 16, 2022, the world lost Jina “Mahsa” Amini. Arrested by Iran’s morality police for what they deemed “improper” hijab attire, she endured severe beatings and tragically passed away while in police custody. Parwiz Zafari’s words, shared in these interviews, echo profoundly his yearning for Iranians to unite and liberate their nation.

Parwiz has held on to the belief that Iran will one day become a free country, and he holds hope that a new generation will carry the torch towards a brighter future for his homeland.

Select festivals & awards

  • DOC NYC Film Festival
  • DOCUTAH Int’l Film Festival
  • DC/DOX Film Festival
  • Best Editing – Hollywood ShortsFest
  • Best Documentary Short – Ojai Film Festival
  • Best Score, Documentary Short – Hollywood Music in Media Awards

About the animation director

Elyse Kelly has built her career as a filmmaker who unites the unique characteristics of animation with documentary storytelling. 

Her work has won awards and been exhibited in festivals worldwide, including Sundance, Tribeca, Annecy, Zagreb, and OIAF. She has directed award-winning campaigns and content for clients such as Netflix, the ACLU, The Atlantic, Sesame Workshop, Sony Music, the United Nations Foundation, and Meow Wolf. 

She is the creative force behind animation studio, Neon Zoo.