After Freedom–a feature film by Vah Babaian–will have its Los Angeles premiere at the 2002 Method Fest Film Festival.
LOS ANGELES–The Method Fest–celebrating breakout-acting performances in independent films–has quickly established itself as the only film festival in America that puts its focus on the actor–believing acting is the core ingredient to great independent filmmaking.
After Freedom–a unique portrait of outsiders’ struggle to survive in America–is a raw and realistic presentation of a grown man caught between his desperate need for an identity versus his sense of debt to those who got him to this country.
The Method Fest will premiere After Freedom on Monday–April 15 at 7:00 PM–at the Laemmle’s Playhouse 7 Theaters–673 East Colorado Blvd.–Pasadena–California. A second screening is scheduled for Wednesday–April 17 at 2:00 PM.
Wim Wenders (the director of Wings Of Desire–Paris–Texas and Buena Vista Social Club) said–"I was impressed with After Freedom. It seems unlikely to find a film in the Mean Streets genre that actually owes more to reality than to other movies. There was an existential urgency and truth to it that stuck with me."
Vah Babaian’s goal with After Freedom was to express something more than the regular clichd "immigrant" film. "What’s important to me is I’m trying to portray what happens when a person thinks he’s missed the boat. What happens after you get what you think you want? With After Freedom–I have the chance to show–in an honest way–what I’ve seen in America – portraying people that are not often depicted on the screen–a neighborhood that hasn’t been seen–a way of life that hasn’t been shown." The people he portrays are American-Armenia’s in the neighborhood of Glendale–California–as they assimilate to the ways of life in the United States.
After Freedom was filmed in and around Glendale–California. Vah Babaian chose to make it independently in spite of offers from production companies to purchase the screenplay. He felt he had to tell this personal story of trials and tribulations surrounding a neighborhood he grew up in–capturing the sights–sounds and characters of Glendale–California – where the largest community of Armenia’s resides outside of Armenia.
Mic Tomasi stars as Michael Abcarian–a conscientious individual struggling with his sense of obligation towards his father–Leon–and commitment to fiance–Anna–while he struggles with Avo’s and Mato’s swindling methods of survival. Sophie Chahinian stars as Anna–Michael’s fiance–who urges Michael to accept maturity’s requirement for changing one’s sense of obligations. Greg Satamian stars as Leon–Michael’s father–trying to adjust to life as a widower seeking a job and learning to drive–so he does not have to be a burden to his son. Shant Bejanian stars as Avo–a hustling swindler–loyal to his friends but a bad influence on Mato–who likes to intimidate people and wave his gun around to convey his self-righteous lifestyle. Ioannis Bogris stars as Mato–who survives by Avo’s influence and is determined to bring his brother to America. Anahid Shahrik stars as Nora–Michael’s sister–who has moved to an independent life away from Michael and her father Leon.
After Freedom was written and directed by Vah Babaian–produced by Eric Sherman and Vah Babaian–co-produced by Brj Beramian–cinematography by Gary Meek–edited by Howard Heard and Tom Ohanian–original score by Alan Derian–executive produced by Sophie Chahinian–Brj Beramian–and Ken Craig.