Facing the Dragon

Two Afghan women strive to maintain hard-won rights while a parliament member faces death threats and a reporter reaches a crossroads.

Facing the dragon 01
Funding Initiative
Open Call
Diversity Development Fund
Mojadidi sedika filmmaker bio

Sedika Mojadidi

Sedika Mojadidi was born in Kabul, Afghanistan and grew up in the United States. She directed and produced a feature documentary, Motherland Afghanistan. The film follows her father’s struggle to make a difference in the maternal mortality epidemic gripping Afghanistan, and aired to strong reviews on Independent Lens and Global Voices. Mojadidi has Show more worked as a supervising producer on the critically-acclaimed ABC News documentary series, Boston Med. She has worked as a producer and camera person on many television projects for PBS, The Learning Channel, The Discovery Channel, A&E, and the Food Network. Her writing was published in an anthology of Afghan American writing, One Story, Thirty Stories, winner of the 2012 Independent Book Publishers Silver Award for Best Anthology. Show less

Other ITVS Films
Motherland Afghanistan
Raskin jenny filmmaker bio

Jenny Raskin

Jenny Raskin’s documentary work has been broadcast on The Sundance Channel, The Learning Channel, The Discovery Health Channel, A&E, and NPR. Her feature documentary, On Hostile Ground, was released theatrically to critical acclaim and was aired on The Sundance Channel.

Other ITVS Films
Motherland Afghanistan

Elizabeth Tracy

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The Film

In a year fraught with uncertainty, filmmaker Sedika Mojadidi follows several Afghan women, within the government and the media, to tell the story of what will happen to them when the Americans leave. Through Mojadidi’s special insider access, we see the day to day realities of Afghan women on the front lines struggling to maintain the hard-won rights in a place where lawlessness, political instability, suicide bombs, and civil war are a way of life.

Dr. Nilofar Ibrahimi, a successful country doctor-turned-member of Parliament is running for re-election in her home province, Badakhshan, an area under siege by the Taliban and insurgents. She must win key votes but doesn’t have the money or the security staff to help against her rivals. Without international monitors for the election process, she is left on her own to run against warlords, drug dealers, and power brokers all threatening her life while vying to put their own candidates in her seat. Juggling motherhood and politics, she’s sent her children to live overseas while she campaigns, hoping they will be safe. Will she be able to win the election and survive escalating death threats?

After eight years of reporting, Shakila Ibrahaimkhel, a top investigative reporter, is at a personal crossroad. Her reports on violence against women and corruption within the new government have put her life in danger and made her job tenuous. Shakila wants to try to seek asylum outside of the country, but she can't leave a profession she loves. Will Shakila be able find a way out of Afghanistan or continue to tell the critical stories that put her life on the line?