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Film professor recognized at distinguished film festivals

Mahmoud Salimi, an associate film professor at Lamar University, has earned international and domestic acclaim
Not Me Film
Mahmoud Salimi
for his short film, “Not Me.”  The film has been selected for screening and been awarded at film festivals in India, United Kingdom and the U.S.  

“Not Me,” was an official selection at the Bangalore Shorts Film Festival and Open Window International Film Challenge in India. The film received “Best Actor Award” in the 8th edition of Bangalore Shorts Film Festival and “Best Fictional Short” in the 3rd edition of the Open Window International Film Festival. In addition, “Not Me” was an official selection at the Georgia Shorts and Northeast Mountain Film Festival. The film was nominated for “Best Action Film” at Georgia Shorts and “Best Actor” in Northeast Mountain Film Festival. 

 “I am extremely humbled to receive the prestigious awards of achievement for Best Acting and Best Fictional Short,” said Salimi, the film’s co-star and director.  “It is uplifting to experience the acknowledgement of your work in an international level.” 

According to Jiyoti Singh, the director of Bangalore Shorts Film Festival, “…this festival is a movement to recognize and popularize the work of young and experienced filmmakers across the India and world. The festival provides a platform to aspiring and professional filmmakers for showcasing their talent with networking and marketing opportunities in film industry.”

Open Window International Film Challenge provides a platform for independent artists to share their talent with masses and communicate their stories with the international audience through the medium of film.

 Georgia Shorts Film Festival and Northeast Mountain Film Festival took place in Atlanta and Dillard, Georgia, respectively, June 14-16. The festivals screened a handful of films from hundreds of submissions. Also “Not Me,” received a special mention in London-X4 Seasonal Short Film Festival in the UK. 

“Not Me” is a story of struggle and survival, tolerance and coexistence in the midst of the Iraq War.  The film centers on an American soldier, Mike, and an Iraqi fighter, Mohammad. One fights for God, the other for democracy. They hate each other but in order to survive, they have to work together. Trapped in a minefield and chased by the Iraqi and American forces, the tension escalates. With fear and resentment in their hearts, can they survive?      

Salimi said the film shows that no matter what peoples’ differences are, they can still coexist. “In this film, I promote the culture of dialog and co-existence. I emphasize the idea of togetherness and tolerance,” Salimi. “Regardless of our political and religious differences, we can still coexist. We can get along with each other as long as there's a mutual respect and understanding between us. The ideologies, fighting for God and war for democracy, have taken thousands of innocents’ lives. So many mothers have mourned and cried on the bodies of their beloved ones.”

“Not Me” has also received official selection and nomination laurels from WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival, Top Indie Film Festival, Olympus Film Festival Los Angeles, Genre Film Celebration, Newlyn International Film Festival, Rome Film Awards, Shutter Speed Film Festival, Mediterranean Film Festival, Eurasia International Film Festival, and Euro Fest International Film Festival. The film is Salimi’s eleventh film as a director. His other films include: “Perfect Restaurant,” “No Vacancy,” “The Moment,” “Timeless,” “Moving Day,” “Wild Weather,” “Wonderful Wetlands,” “Forces of Nature,” “What For?” and “All About Hair.”    

 See “Not Me’s” trailer.

 For more information about “Not Me” email Salimi.   

 About Mahmoud Salimi:

Mahmoud Salimi is a writer, director, editor, cinematographer and associate professor of film at Lamar University, who creates work that takes a critical look at the challenges that affect the lives of people around the world. He has worked on various fiction and documentary films, music videos and corporate promotions in Asia, Europe, and North America. His work has been recognized in various international film festivals including: Worldfest-Houston International Film Festival, Cardiff International Film Festival, Beirut International Film Festival, Caribbean International Film Festival, Bronze Lens Film Festival, First Cut Film Series, Rome Film Awards, Top Indie Film Awards, Los Angeles Cinefest, Olympus Film Festival Los Angeles, and Lewiston Auburn Film Festival, to name a few. Salimi is a Fulbright Scholar, a member of the Phi Beta Delta Honor Society for International Scholars, the Press Club of Southeast Texas and Popular Culture of America in the South. He has served as a juror in various film competitions.