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Roadside Attractions will distribute Maryam Keshavarz’s CIRCUMSTANCE, which Participant Media acquired at the Sundance Film Festival. Winner of this year’s Sundance Audience Award, the film is set in contemporary Iran, where a wealthy family struggles to contain a teenager’s growing sexual rebellion and her brother’s dangerous obsession. The film is targeted for a summer 2011 release.

Directed by Maryam Keshavarz, the cast includes Nikohl Boosheri, Sarah Kazemy, Reza Sixo Safai, Soheil Parsa, Nasrin Pakkho, Sina Amedson, and Keon Mohajeri

Teenagers Atafeh, and her best friend, Shireen, are experimenting with their burgeoning sexuality amidst the subculture of Tehran’s underground art scene when Atafeh’s brother, Mehran, returns home from drug rehab as the prodigal son. Battling his demons, Mehran vehemently renounces his former life as a classical musician and joins the morality police. He disapproves of his sister’s developing intimate relationship with Shireen and becomes obsessed with saving Shireen from Atafeh’s influence. Suddenly, the two siblings, who were close confidants, are entangled in a triangle of suspense, surveillance, and betrayal as the once-liberal haven of the family home becomes a place of danger for the beautiful Atafeh.

Splendidly constructed and saturated with a sumptuous sense of style and sensuality, Circumstance marks the arrival of an exciting, original talent. First-time feature writer/director Maryam Keshavarz registers a rare glimpse of forbidden love in today’s Iranian youth culture. | Sundance Film Festival

“Sundance audiences clearly loved this gorgeous, cool, thought-provoking film as much as we did,” says d’Arbeloff, “We think it has enormous potential for many different types of audiences, and we’re thrilled to be working with our friends at Participant on it.”

“CIRCUMSTANCE is one of those truly mesmerizing films that connects with the audience in a very powerful way, and we are looking forward to joining with Roadside Attractions to bring our first foreign language offering to U.S. audiences,” says Strauss.

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