// Presented as part of August's Locarno Open Doors Series //
Exclusive Interview with Rubaiyat Hossain
Spotlight on Under Construction
Rubaiyat Hossain / Bangladesh, 2015 / Bogotá, Dhaka, Iquique, Salento, São Paulo, Scottsdale, Seattle, Stockholm, Vesoul / 88'
Roya ostensibly has it good, compared with other Bangladeshi women— she lives in Dhaka where she has a successful career as an actress and a modern apartment that she shares with her husband, a businessman, and a maid, Moyna. Yet tensions lurk beneath the polished veneer of Roya's life: both her mother and her husband expect her to have a baby, while Roya remains frustrated by the fact that she's played the same role in the theatre role Red Oleanders for twelve years. Moyna meanwhile yearns to be a mother while Roya's mother, abandoned by her own husband, has found solace in religious fundamentalism.
Deconstructing subtle hints of masculine hegemony in contemporary Bangladeshi society, Rubaiyat Hossain's second feature film premiered at Berlin Feminist Film Festival, Bogotá, Iquique, Salento, Scottsdale, Seattle, São Paulo and Vesoul, where it won the Jury Prize; Dhaka, where it won the Audience Award for Best Film; and the Asian American International Film Festival, where Hossain won the Emerging Director Award.
"A perpetual and substantial depiction of women in an expanding city... a valiant work of a Bangladeshi woman filmmaker placed at the heart of society"
- Jury Statement Festival International des Cinemas d’Asie de Vesoul, Dhaka Tribune