53 Stairs Studio is launching a Kickstarter campaign to help fund the post-production work on an anti-Iranian regime film entitled a tranzlatur: A Vision of the Dragon King, Zahhak, in the Nuclear Ayatollah Dynasty.
Filmmakers go public with campaign but stay private with identities for fear of retribution.
The feature motion picture, combining animation with filmed footage, which is being produced in Boston, is in part about the totalitarian regime in Iran and the Ayatollah as seen through the daydreams and hallucinations of a student in Iran who has to translate into English an ancient Arabian myth about the dragon king, Zahhak.
In order to make this work of art, the filmmakers say they are putting themselves in danger because, as they put it, they are not certain that the Ayatollah has a sense of humor.
Because of the unforgiving policies of the current regime in Iran and the fact that some still have family in that country, they are masking their identities.
On the film’s website, a-tranzlatur, the filmmakers’ faces are hidden behind masks and, on video, their voices scrambled electronically.
Although Hollywood films, such as “Sin City” and “300,” have combined animation with filmed action, this technology has never been used before for a film about the political and social state of Iran and its oppressive government.
Pre-production has been completed on a tranzlatur (a translator) and the Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for post-production will be launched on Oct. 30, 2015.
a tranzlatur is the tale of an English student, Hafez, who is translating an ancient Arabian myth of a dragon-king named Zahhak with two snakes on his shoulders.
Zahhak’s snakes must feed daily on human brains in order for Zahhak to survive. The film draws eerie parallels between Iran’s Ayatollah Time and Zahhak’s story.
As Iran turns into a regular misery because of the ayatollah’s diktat, Hafez re-imagines the devil incarnate of his translation, Zahhak, through the persona of the ayatollah.
Hafez finally escapes the unbending Iranian regime, only to become a paperless, dislocated person in a foreign country.