A Turkish-Jewish family faces a series of dilemmas on the morning of Susam’s Bar-mitzvah ceremony with the limitations of Shabbat day rules when Susam locks himself in his room and
does not get out for his ceremony.

  • Sami Morhayim
  • Sami Morhayim
  • Aycan Aluçlu
  • Hilal Şenel
  • Fatih Al
    Key Cast
  • Feri Baycu Güler
    Key Cast
  • İzzet Bana
    Key Cast
  • Forti Barokas
    Key Cast
  • Eylül Aydın
    Key Cast
  • Kağan Kerimoğlu
    Director of Photography
  • Nilüfer Arlı
    Art Director
  • Batuhan Yalaz
  • Taylan Geçit
    Sound Designers
  • Yalın Özgencil
    Sound Designers
  • Hasan Ali Kılıçgün
    First Assistant Director
  • Yasemin Arslan
  • İlhan Uğur Naymanlar
    Production Manager
  • Sercodelic
  • Pınar Sevilmiş
    Festival Director
  • Project Title (Original Language):
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Dark comedy, Drama
  • Runtime:
    17 minutes 53 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    February 1, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    6,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • 40th Istanbul Film Festival
    May 20, 2021
    National Premiere
  • Accessible Film Festival
    October 11, 2021
    International Competition
  • Gershman Philadelphia Jewish Film Festival
    United States
    November 6, 2021
    Fall Fest 2021
  • 27th Berlin Jewish Film Festival
    August 12, 2021
    World Premiere
  • UK Jewish Film Festival
    United Kingdom
    November 4, 2021
    UK Premiere
    Short Film Selection
  • Diaspora International Film Festival
    Second Best Film
  • Warsaw Jewish Film Festival
    Polish Premiere
Director Biography - Sami Morhayim

Sami Morhayim was born in 1993. Since 2012 he has been in director, editor, and producer roles in various projects. He graduated from Koç University with Media & Visual Arts and Psychology double major. His first short film as a director, “Meçhul”, has been screened in both national and international film festivals. He worked as film editor in the short film "Fahriyem". Recently, he produced his new short film "Ay Bulutta" where he is also in film editor role. Ay Bulutta is planned to be completed in late 2021. He is currently working on his feature-length film. He is an attendee of 2021 Talents Sarajevo as a director.

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Director Statement

The short film “Susam” is where I question the actions of a family in the heat of religious dilemmas. Exceptions exist wherever human exists as well, and if it happens with religion, the opinions of all the humans involved in that scene increase vastly. With the two important concepts, Shabbat and Bar-mitzvah, and having them facing each other is the most delicious way to examine a traditional family for me. I give high importance to the dark humor aspect in dramas where I tried to tailor these settings in detail. Because I believe there is a huge potential in dark comedy to think deeply of situations.

The story resembles in one setting that is the family house which I believe gives me great areas to play around. When there are five different opinions and personal traits, finding the solution gets harder and harder with the complexity of the problem. Even though we see that the solution is just in front of their eyes, these characters lack these bright answers. Therefore, stuck in this house, this close but alien to each other family creates an entangled story.

I want to enhance the one setting scheme with the one-take & one-sequence which will improve the meaning of dilemmas the family faces. While each occasion generates new problems, the display of desperation will feed the one-take filming style and create a huge tension. Another reason for the decision is that I want to follow each family member’s path, respectively. We will be resolving their communication with the door one by one, whereas watching their arguments together in between as well.