ZMA Entertainment

ABROAD (à l'étranger or الغربة) is the first film produced by ZMA Entertainment, an American film production company owned and soon to be launched by Zayn Alexander. ABROAD is a short film starring Zayn Alexander and Pascale Seigneurie. The screenplay was written by Seigneurie and the film was directed by Alexander. ABROAD will make its world premiere at the 2018 Santa Barbara International Film Festival, January 31 - February 10. Official dates and showtimes will be announced soon. Learn more at sbiff.org

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In a world full of overly expensive special effects- driven films which have little in terms of a story, we need more films like Abroad. It has heart, it has character, and it has layers.
— CARL BURGESS, Screencritix
Abroad gives proof to the point that when you start with a solid screenplay and cast two fine actors who can carry it off, the audience is bound to follow.
— MARK SCHWAB, Diamond in the Rough Films
This is a simple, thought-provoking film to which anyone can relate. The performances just elevate the film to another level.
— ROY ZAFRANI, Top Shorts
Not only was it entertaining watching these two people in their uncertain moments, this was also a great way to shed some light on an ongoing real-life situation.
— Indyred
Our leading cast put on one hell of a show. Seigneurie and Alexander have seemingly little problem portraying the life of this couple. They are believable in their roles and don’t miss a beat.
— 22 Indie Street
Un court métrage simple, doux et subtil dans l’écriture et dans le jeu, qui expose plusieurs problèmes imbriqués, dont on sent qu’ils entrent en écho les uns avec les autres.
— MARCEAU DESCHAMPS-SÉGURA
 
 

News and Updates:

 

  • OFFICIAL SELECTION, FilmFest52 2018 (Bethel, CT)

Abroad has been accepted for screening at a future FilmFest52 date. FilmFest52 is a unique festival that runs years round, screening on average 250 films per year. Screenings are generally held on Wednesday nights at 7pm at The Bethel Cinema located in Bethel CT. www.bethelcinema.com

 
  • OFFICIAL SELECTION, New Haven International Film Festival 2018 (New Haven, CT)

Abroad has been accepted to screen at New Haven International Film Festival May 2-6, 2018 in New Haven Connecticut. 

COUNTRY United States

LANGUAGE Arabic

RUNTIME 10 minutes

COLOR Color

AKA Abroad | El Gherbe | à l'étranger

Director Statement

There are a lot of conversations taking place today at the national stage, one of them is that of diversity. While the industry has come a long way, particularly when it comes to embracing diverse characters, the issue still remains. I believe that true diversity means cultural inclusiveness in all of its forms with the story being front and center. It's one thing to greenlight a generic storyline and include a diverse cast (LGBTQ, Asian, African American, Middle-Eastern, etc.), it's a whole other thing to present the lives of people from different cultures and, as a result, pave the way for an organic casting process and true change.

Abroad is my first film as a filmmaker. I'm also an actor in the project. This film started out as a personal experiment between Pascale and myself. Pascale Seigneurie is my writer and co-star. We wanted to tell a story about how we as people are not so different from each other regardless of where we come from. Our stories, emotions, and thoughts are universal. We’ve all experienced that inner conflict of having to choose between our dreams and material reality. We’ve all experienced that yearn for what we believe is an idealistic existence and how, eventually, we succumb to the temptations of the regular. 

Abroad revolves around actors and the film industry. However, the film is not just a short film about the typecasting of Middle-Eastern actors. The real focus are the lives of a Lebanese couple beyond the small roles available to them. It's a "slice of life" story that hasn't been told before, and it's my desire to see it instigate deep conversations about family, career, and the struggles one faces in pursing his or her dreams while convention and societal expectations play their respective roles in influencing one's thoughts and behavior. In making this film, I imagined a film I wanted to see, so I made one. 

 
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While a release date has not been officially confirmed, a DVD will go on sale at the end of 2018.