After our first collaboration on our multi award winning short film I Say Dust, Hala and I are joining our creative forces again to bring to the screen the short film Tallahassee.


 Still from I Say Dust starring Hala Alyan

Still from I Say Dust starring Hala Alyan

Tallahassee follows the story of Lara, an Arab American woman in her late 20s, on her first day of reentering the world after being released from a psychiatric facility. Navigating her family's denial and cultural shame about her mental health issues, Lara finds herself drawn into an adventure with a little boy, whose imagination helps her begin to heal.

Tallahassee is the portrayal of a young woman's reentry into the world, a meditation on the enormous task of life after grief. Framed in the context of diaspora, this film will grant a glimpse into the struggles of mental illness, an issue often silenced and pathologized in Arab culture.


We are aiming to raise $10,000 by December 15th, 2018. Help us reach our goal by making a contribution below.
Contributions of any amount will help us move the project closer to realization. There are various options to contribute. Contributors at the producer credit level(s) will be contacted by email for further details.
Filming will take place in Brooklyn, New York, late January 2019.


note: to pay with a debit or credit card, please proceed with PayPal and then choose your desired method of payment.


Hala Alyan (writer/lead actor) is a Palestinian American writer and clinical psychologist whose work has appeared in The New York Times, Guernica and elsewhere. Her poetry collections have won the Arab American Book Award and the Crab Orchard Series. Her debut novel, SALT HOUSES, was published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in 2017, and was the winner of the Arab American Book Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. She made her acting debut in Darine Hotait’s short film I SAY DUST that is based on Hala Alyan’s poem ‘Valentine’.

Darine Hotait (director) is a Lebanese American writer and film director. Her award winning films have screened at over a hundred international film festival and can be seen on AMC Networks, SundanceTV, ShortsTV, IndieFlix, The Journal of Short Films. She is the recipient of the AFAC cinema grant, the New York Foundation for The Arts Immigrant Artist Fellowship. She was nominated for a Goethe Award and an EMMY blue-Ribbon Award. She is the founder of Cinephilia Productions in New York.