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Participant Media’s Social Action Campaign For Circumstance Examines Human Rights Issues

Film Opens In New York And Los Angeles This Friday, Expanding To Additional Cities September 9

Participant Media’s Social Action Campaign for the film Circumstance, opening in New York and Los Angeles this Friday, focuses on human rights issues with screening-and-conversation events around the country, and original video and editorial content created for the official film and Social Action site at TakePart.com/circumstance.   Liana Schwarz, Participant’s Senior Vice President of Social Action & Advocacy, explained, “Just as the film deals with a number of human rights issues, our Social Action Campaign offers audiences the ability to engage with various aspects of human rights, ranging from those of LGBT persons to women to people living in present day Iran and other Middle Eastern nations. The campaign is designed to shatter stereotypes, examine the ways young people are driving political change and reshaping religious and cultural traditions, and explore how social media is bringing together seemingly divergent peoples.”   On August 23rd, Participant Media held a screening of Circumstance, followed by a panel discussion featuring the film’s writer-director Maryam Keshavarz and cast members Reza Sixo Safai and Sina Amundsen and moderated by Shannon Kelley, Director of UCLA Film & Television Archive’s Celebration of Iranian Cinema at the Landmark Theater in West Los Angeles. Other screening events will take place August 30 at the Landmark E. Street Theater in Washington DC; August 31 at the Embarcadero Theater in San Francisco; and September 8th at the Landmark Century in Chicago. Representatives of Human Rights Campaign (HRC), Participant’s primary Social Action Campaign partner on the film, will be among the panelists in  DC, San Francisco and Chicago. In addition, TakePart.com/Circumstance features Artists In Exile, an online series profiling musicians, painters, writers and filmmakers who were exiled or are potentially exiled out of Iran because of their artistic expression, along with Visions of Freedom, an interactive digital photo exhibit featuring stills taken by the filmmakers, cast and crew members and human rights activists and a gallery for visitors to share their own pictorial impressions of freedom.   From Participant Media and Roadside Attractions, Circumstance is a suspenseful tale of love and family upended by obsession and suspicion, as well as a provocative coming-of-age story that cracks open the hidden, underground world of Iranian youth culture, where a young woman’s most electrifying passions can become the most dangerous of secrets. The Audience Award winner at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, writer-director Maryam Keshavarz’s debut feature boldly takes filmgoers inside a modern Iran rarely witnessed by outsiders: an exhilarating, invisible realm of illicit nightclubs where young hipsters risk arrest, and their futures, as they experiment with sex, drugs and defiance, all while trying to evade the authorities.   Participant Media is an entertainment company that focuses on documentary and narrative feature films, television, publishing and digital content about the real issues that shape our lives. For each of its projects, Participant creates social action and advocacy programs to transform the impact of the media experience into individual and community action. Participant’s online Social Action Network is TakePart. Founded by Chairman Jeff Skoll in 2004, Jim Berk serves as CEO and Ricky Strauss as President. Participant’s films include The Kite Runner, Charlie Wilson’s War, An Inconvenient Truth, Good Night, and Good Luck. , The Visitor, Food, Inc., The Cove, The Crazies, Countdown to Zero, Waiting for “Superman,” Fair Game, PAGE ONE: Inside The New York Times, The Help and Contagion.