Shamim Sarif


Shamim Sarif is a Novelist, Screenwriter and film director.

★ Шамим Сариф

Together with her wife Hanan Kattan, they founded Enlightenment Productions with a focus on quality, story-driven independent films.

Shamim Sarif is an equally successful author (the Pendleton May First Novel Award, Betty Trask Award), screenwriter and film director (World Cinema Best Director at Phoenix Film Festival, and Best Director at Clip (Tampa) Intl. Film Festival). She is the author of several published short stories and notable music lyrics, has script-edited a children’s TV series and directed music videos. She also received 2008 VISIBLITY AWARDS as ‘International Lesbian/Bi Woman of the Year’.

An acclaimed novelist, Shamim has deep roots in South Africa, where her parents and grandparents were born and raised – a heritage that inspired her first, award-winning novel, THE WORLD UNSEEN.

THE WORLD UNSEEN won the Pendleton May First Novel Award, and then the prestigious Betty Trask Award. It was selected for inclusion at all the major UK book festivals, including Hay-on-Wye, Cheltenham and Edinburgh and sold out of its initial print runs.

Johannesburg’s leading newspaper, “The Star,” voted the book one of their books of the year. The Times in London called it “an impressive debut.” Sarif’s story brings together the descriptive power of the novelist with the screenwriter’s mastery of dialogue.

Her second novel, DESPITE THE FALLING SNOW was published in London by Hodder Headline in May 2004 and received overwhelmingly excellent reviews. In the autumn of 2005, the novel was released by American publisher, St Martin’s Press. Shamim has adapted this moving tale set in cold war Russia and present day United States into a screenplay. The picture is helmed by Sarif and is being prepared for production by Enlightenment Productions.

Shamim began her studies in directing at Raindance in London. Her novel I CAN’T THINK STRAIGHT, published in 2008, served as an inspiration for her directorial debut of the same name. An urban romantic comedy based on Shamim’s script and staring Lisa Ray and Sheetal Sheth follows the improbable love affair between two women of very differing cultures. The film screened on the festival circuits and was successfully released in North American cinemas and other international film circuits.

See more about Shamim Sarif at the official Enlightenment Productions site.