London, United Kingdom (PressExposure) June 25, 2009 -- Dedication and passion have paid off for Enlightenment Productions, a UK Limited company based in London, England, focused on producing entertaining and inspirational, independent feature films with integrity.
Producer Hanan Kattan created Enlightenment Productions in partnership with author and director Shamim Sarif, solidifying their intense creative and personal relationship. Among Enlightenmentâs recently completed projects, is The World Unseen, adapted for the screen from her novel of the same name by Sarif, who also directed the film.
Funded almost entirely by private equity, with assistance from the National Film & Video Foundation in South Africa, The World Unseen was shot entirely on location in South Africa and features an international cast.
Enlightenment Productionsâ goal is to harness the power of film to tell stories that push boundaries, challenge perceptions and cause the audience to consider even as they are being entertained. The underlying belief is that great films begin with great scripts, and the collaborations between Kattan and Sarif provide a fertile source.
Hananâs debut film as a producer and Sarifâs as director was I Canât Think Straight which wrapped filming in August 2006, based on Sarifâs novel. Other joint directing/producing projects based on Sarifâs writing include Despite The Falling Snow, a tale of passion and betrayal in Cold War Russia, and The Dreaming Spires - a period drama about a young American boy at Oxford and the relationship he forms with a blind Englishwoman, based on Sarifâs short story The Reader.
âI am lucky in that Shamim creates characters and worlds that we both feel strongly about, that motivate, move, entertain and educate and hopefully help with tolerance and openness,â says Kattan. âI am also lucky that I donât have to go far for material. I donât see myself as a film producer; I see myself as a producer of Shamimâs films.
âTo put in so much time, energy and so much of myself producing a film makes sense to me only if it is Shamimâs work or if Shamim has adapted it and is directing it. Otherwise it would mean being away from my wife and family and no project can be that important for me to take on.â
Enlightenment Productionsâ mandate is to achieve higher-than-expected production value for the budgets involved, by tapping into the excitement and creativity of cast and crew who are passionate about their projects. By combining manageable budgets with excellent quality scripts and top class execution, Enlightenment is dedicated to growing its slate organically.
Kattan began her career in marketing, primarily toiletries and hair care. After building a successful distribution company, she moved into creating, marketing and promoting her own brands. It is precisely this drive and dedication to projects in which she believes that helped Kattan move into the highly competitive world of film production.
She has a unique talent for combining a deep passion for her projects with the ability to thrive in a highly competitive environment. She gets things done, and she always gets others as excited about her ideas as she is - qualities which make her a success in her role as a film producer.
âIt was a learning curve moving to film production and also to film sales,â says Kattan. âBut I enjoy a challenge and I enjoyed being in this highly creative field.â
It hardly gets more challenging than never having set foot on a film set until shooting began on I Canât Think Straight. It was Sarifâs creative frustration that prompted Kattan to take such drastic steps.
âShamim had optioned another script to Hollywood for years. She finally got the call to say they raised $15 million US to do her movie but the condition was to add two love scenes and a nude scene. It was a story of unrequited love!â recalls Kattan.
âShe could not do it and convinced me to try producing her films. I am doing it to give Shamim the creative freedom to bring her vision and our vision to as many people as we can.â
The World Unseen opens at cinemaâs 13th February 2009. For more information on the film visit http://www.theworldunseenfilm.com or go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jlD3EprZp5M to see the Official World Unseen Trailer.