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Nijla Mu'min's Jinn

Festival Predictions

2018 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Nijla Mu’min’s Jinn

2018 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Nijla Mu’min’s Jinn

In a figurative sense, Nijla Mu’min is coming out from the Middle of Nowhere (she was a Production Assistant on Ava DuVernay’s break out Sundance film) and for those in the industry already in the know, the Filmmaker Magazine 25 Faces multi-disciplinarian might already be on a trajectory towards claiming a space in the storytelling sphere that is entirely her own. The successfully funded Kickstarter projectJinn might belong to a film category about doubly ostracized part of society and there is no better time than now for such a portrait. Thanks to some solid backers, we think this is a perfect fit project for Sundance. A topical issue sans ham-fisted clichés, the project was selected as a resident for the San Francisco Film Society’s FilmHouse Residency program, was selected for IFP’s Narrative Lab and this past July was selected to attend the 2017 Sundance Institute Sound and Music Design Lab at Skywalker Ranch. Filming took place in Los Angeles this past January on the semi-autobiographical tale with thesps Simone Missick, Zoe Renee, Hisham Tawfiq, Kelly Jenrette, Kelvin Harrison, Jr. and Dorian Missick.

Gist: This is about a 17 year-old carefree girl named Summer (Zoe Renee) whose world is turned upside down when her mother Jade (Simone Missick) abruptly converts to Islam and becomes a different person which prompts Summer to reevaluate her own life and identity.

Production Co./Producers: Sweet Potato Pie Productions’ Avril Z. Speaks, Nijla Mu’min, Maya Emelle, Arielle Saturne

Prediction: NEXT section with a bullet.



Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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