”Our Summer in Tehran” (OST) by Justine Shapiro is being broadcast on public television stations through July 2011 and will air on WHUT in Washington, DC next April 28 & 29th, 2011.
In OST, Justine takes her six-year-old son, Mateo, into the homes of three
Iranian families, and for one hour, religious fundamentalism and nuclear
proliferation take a back seat to subtle, human moments of everyday life.
When Justine sat down with Terry Gross in 2002 to discuss her Academy Award nominated “Promises,” a film about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through the eyes of children, she said, “Children are sponges of their environment, and as children, they are malleable. Their own curiosity is a stronger force than the rhetoric or dogma they grow up with.”
Why would Justine, a Jewish American, risk her own safety and that of her
son to make this film?
“I wanted to meet Iranian mothers in their homes, before our sons meet on
the battlefield.” Journalist Evan Hill summarized it well … “These people
who could not seem less like our enemy, might someday find themselves
beneath our bombs. This is a film that Americans need to see sooner rather
Yesterday, Ahmadinejad lashed out saying “The West” is to blame for the
unrest in the Middle East. “They are seeking destruction and a reinforcement
of their evil dominance in the region,” he said. Unfortunately, some in the
West believe this leader speaks on behalf of the people who live under his
But how do Iranians feel about their enemy, the Americans?
And are the human faces and stories in Justine’s film enough to change
attitudes towards Iranians and Muslims in general here in the United States?
You can learn much about Justine and her film at