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The Perfect Candidate

This film will screen on 15th April at:

11.00 AM (EST) / 4.00 PM (UK) : Watch the Film

This Q&A will start:

1.00 PM (EST) / 6 PM (UK): RSVP for the Q&A featuring Haifaa Al Mansour (Film Director), In Conversation with Uzma Hasan, with the participation of Mia Bays (Birds’ Eye View - Reclaim the Frame)


114 min | Drama | Modern Films | Dir: Haifaa Al-Mansour

 “That’s why I decided to run for office. To make a change in our community, whether it’s fixing the road or changing our old-fashioned sometimes negative mindset… which dismisses me as a serious candidate because of my gender.” - Dr. Maryam Abdulaziz al Safan, in The Perfect Candidate

THE PERFECT CANDIDATE is a new feature film from trailblazing director Haifaa Al Mansour, about a female doctor in Saudi Arabia who runs for the municipal council to try to orchestrate change at a local level - and for the greater cause of social justice. A fun and fulfilling watch. Called an "Essential Film of 2020" in The Guardian, alongside Parasite and 1917. Presented with the distributor Modern Films and in partnership with Reclaim the Frame, an organisation who work to build audiences for films directed by women and give them a greater voice through inclusive, diverse and discursive event-led screenings.


11.00 AM (EST) / 4.00 PM (UK) : Watch the Film

1.00 PM (EST) / 6 PM (UK): RSVP for the Q&A featuring Haifaa Al Mansour (Film Director), In Conversation with Uzma Hasan, with the participation of Mia Bays (Birds’ Eye View - Reclaim the Frame)



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If there’s one thing director @HaifaaMansour wants you to take away from #ThePerfectCandidate, it’s that everyone has the capacity for change - and trust us, her message reads loud and clear. #StayHomeWatchTogether & make a difference:

Looking for things to do during the lockdown? Join me for an online screening of The Perfect Candidate, followed by a Q&A with the directors! RSVP here:

What does it take to make change happen? Luckily, you can find out from home with #StayHomeWatchTogether - watch the inspirational #ThePerfectCandidate from @ModernFilmsEnt with us, followed by a Q&A w/ director @HaifaaMansour ♥️ RSVP here:


Download our Instagram graphic to share with the copy below

#StayHome crew - catch a screening of the inspirational #ThePerfectCandidate today! Bought to you by the #StayHomeWatchTogether team! Make a difference from the safety of your home. Head to @modernfilmsent for more info…

Looking for things to do during lockdown? #StayHomeWatchTogether have your back. Catch a screening of the powerful film #ThePerfectCandidate from @haifaa.almansour tonight! #WomenInFilm need our support now more than ever; @ModernFilmsEnt have more info.

Haifaa Al Mansour

Haifaa Al Mansour is a film director, originally from Saudi Arabia but now based in Los Angeles. Her debut feature Wadjda was the first film to be shot entirely in Saudi and garnered great critical acclaim around the world and distribution by leading studios, including Sony Pictures Classics in North America. Her filmography includes Mary Shelley (2017), a romantic drama about the writer’s early life, and The Perfect Candidate (2019), about a young female doctor running for local office to orchestrate on-the-ground social change. It had its world premiere in the Official Competition at Venice and played at the Sundance Film Festival in 2020. She is currently in development of an adaptation of the YA novel The Selection for Netflix.


Uzma Hasan

Uzma Hasan is an independent producer and a founding partner in Little House Productions. She is the driving force behind the company which focuses on bringing subversive stories to global audiences. Her credits include Firstborn and The Infidel. Prior to this, she was head of development at Slingshot Productions. She is also a non- executive director on the board of Channel 4, a trustee of Bird’s Eye View and sits on the selection committee and juries for the British Independent Film Awards and BAFTA. In 2013, she was awarded the British Muslim Award for Services to Creativity.


Mia Bays

Mia Bays is an Oscar winning twice BAFTA nominated creative producer working across fiction and docs, with a proven track record of launching careers with over 25 years experience in film on over 50 features. Her credits include Scott Walker: 30 Century Man and Letters from Baghdad. She is also the Director-at-Large of Bird’s Eye View and their event cinema-led programme Reclaim the Frame, that builds audiences for new films directed by women.

Connecting with #StayHomeWatchTogether: Why watch The Perfect Candidate now?

As Dr. Maryam takes on the role of the first woman candidate for office in her municipality, she must soothe concerned family members, motivate apathetic voters, overcome condescending and even threatening opposition, and believe in herself. At this moment in time, the film reminds us:

  • Everyone has the capacity for change

  • Incremental steps can lead to sweeping societal evolution

  • One person can make a difference

Film Context

Women are enjoying increasing rights in Saudi Arabia, but even when rights exist in law and on paper, social norms and traditions can create opposition that can render those laws meaningless. In The Perfect Candidate, director and co-writer Haifaa Al-Monsour weaves a tale that reveals the many layers of change that need to happen in order to truly transform a society on individual, family, community, and societal levels. 


Watch the film and share the trailer, and your thoughts about it with friends and family: 

  • Instagram: modernfilmsent

  • FB: @modernfilms

  • Twitter @ModernFilmsEnt 

Encourage women’s leadership and empowerment

  • Support women to run for office, or run for office yourself

  • Join community organizations that support women’s and girl’s leadership

  • Stand in solidarity with women who speak out to make change

The Perfect Candidate


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