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Afghan film 'Osama' to Screen at UW-Eau Claire

RELEASED: Sept. 8, 2005

Osama sceneEAU CLAIRE — "Osama" (2003), the first feature film to be made in Afghanistan since the rise and fall of the Taliban, will be presented Sept. 8-11 at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. It will screen at 6 and 8:30 p.m. Thursday through Sunday in Davies Theatre.

"Osama" looks at the lives of the Afghan people while under Taliban control and the problems remaining after the Taliban era has ended. Featuring all amateur actors, the film was shot in the city of Kabul over the course of a year.

The film, inspired by a true story, follows the life of a 12-year old girl (Marina Golhahari) after the start of the Taliban era. When the Taliban takes control of her country, the hospital where both she and her mother work is closed causing them to lose their jobs. The Taliban also makes it forbidden for women to leave their houses without a "legal companion" — a male family member. With both the girl's father and brother dead, there is no one to support the family since her mother is not allowed to leave the house. Seeing no other option, the mother disguises the girl as a boy, who is now called Osama. Now dressed as a male, the girl faces a terrifying and confusing journey as she tries to keep the Taliban from discovering her true identity.

Directed by Siddiq Barmak, the 83-minute film is rated PG-13 for mature thematic content. The film is in Dari with English subtitles.

Admission is $2 for International Film Society and UW-Eau Claire faculty and staff, or $1 for UW-Eau Claire students. Tickets are available at the University Service Center, (715) 836-3727, in Davies Center's east lobby.

The film is presented by the International Film Society.

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JS/NW

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