Remember this come Oscar-pool time: The Iranian film Under the Shadow is a front-runner for the Best Foreign Language Film award, and the fact that it has already been selected by the United Kingdom as its entry for that category is largely due to a critically lauded performance by one woman: Narges Rashidi.
Rashidi plays a woman beset by evil spirits, the haunting going down during the Iran-Iraq war, and while, yes, that sounds like a horror movie, the 36-year-old hopes you don’t dismiss it as "just" that.
“It works on so many levels and is written so smartly that it would be a shame to just call it a horror film,” she pleads over the phone from a cab in New York. She’s visiting from Berlin and doing rounds for the film’s limited theatrical release. (Netflix bought the streaming rights for it; it should drop there this winter.)
The actress—who’s kind of a big deal on the indie scene in Europe—was born in Iran and lived there as a child during the war in which this film is set. “My parents protected me, so I didn’t really see all of the horrors,” she says. “I do remember waking up in my mother’s lap and hearing noises, and she would say ‘Oh, it’s just some bombs; go to sleep.’”
Rashidi later moved to Germany and says she worked so hard on building a new life for herself that she buried a lot of who she’d been in Iran. “I totally forgot where I came from. Doing this movie was cathartic. I got to dig so much deeper into that time.”
If you’re wondering how to pronounce her name, it’s a soft “g” and the emphasis is on the last syllable. “It means ‘daf-fodil,’” she says after patiently coaching us through a few bungled “Nargeez? Nargas? Narjays?” “I was born on the first day of spring, and I was supposed to be called something even harder to pronounce!” she says. “But my mother’s father came to her in a dream—he’d passed away—and told her that my name had to be Narges.”
Like we said: a name not to forget.
Photography by Anna Wendt.
Kate Middleton wasn't holding back on the real talk on her first public appearance of 2017.
Visiting a treatment centre for parents with personality disorders, the Duchess of Cambridge was overheard telling one of the women receiving help:
"Parenting is tough," she said. "And with the experiences you've all witnessed, to do that on top of your own anxieties, and the lack of support you also received as mothers... I find it extraordinary how you've managed actually."
She also mentioned elsewhere that before arriving at the centre she'd just left "a room of six under threes" which we're taking to mean Princess Charlotte had the crew over for brunch and a marathon of Paw Patrol.
PS. That's a brand new Eponine coat K. Middy's wearing, FYI, which can be yours for around $2500 CAD.
Like you weren't emotional enough today (Trumpnauguration whyyyyyyy), here's the final episode of West Wing Week courtesy of the White House's Twitter accounts.
It's basically an incredibly moving montage of the Obama's saying thank you to all the people who've been by their sides for the past 8 years—from their security detail to the entire country.
Sad news for Prince Louis and Princess Tessy, guys: They're getting a divorce.
Who are Prince Louis and Princess Tessy, you might be asking? Well, Louis is the third son of the current Grand Duke of Luxembourg. (If you don't know who that is either? Yeah, we had to wikipedia this one too). He is not, however, in line for the throne because he gave us his rights when he got married ten years ago at age 20, three months after the birth of his and Tessy's first child (scandal!).
Louis, 30, and Tessy, 31, have two sons together, and have asked (via an official letter from the tiny European country's monarchy) for privacy at this time.