Winner, Best Actress in a Short,
FANtastic Horror Film Festival
A native of Rhode Island, Iranian-American actor Ali Bavarian was a financial advisor before dedicating himself to his acting and musical career. In a short span of time, Ali has been seen on screen and on TV both in the US and in Japan. His previous credits include “Andrea: Side Two”, directed by Tim Russ of Star Trek Voyager fame, and a memorable recent appearance on a Japanese television documentary directed by Yuki Gorouku. Even if you haven’t seen Ali’s work, it’s possible that you may have heard Ali. He has several voice over credits Bavarian’s star continues to rise in “Seeking Valentina”, directed by Armin Nasseri, playing Benjamin, a writer unraveling in the aftermath of the death of his beloved wife. Bavarian regularly hones his acting craft at various workshops in Los Angeles. A multi-talented performer, Ali has 28 years of experience playing the piano and singing as well.
Winner, Best Actor in a Short,
FANtastic Horror Film Festival
Seeking Valentina is very much about the idea of the Iranian-American family.
Vida Ghaffari, Kristin West and Armin Nasseri attend the premiere of The Astronaut in spring 2015.
Mel A. Gibson has enjoyed film making since he was 15, even starting his own production company, Red-IX. A true renaissance man in the making, Mel also enjoys inventing and designing products all while preparing to transfer to a university. “Recently I had my most significant learning experience on the set of Seeking Valentina”, Mel says “where I learned about the operation and function of the cast and crew.” Mel is very much supportive of the message of Seeking Valentina as well, saying, “…with any of the work I do, I care about sending a message in this film.” He explains, “I wanted people to realize not all Middle Easteners are dark skinned and brown-eyed.” Mel plays Benjamin’s grieving teenage son, Jacob in Seeking Valentina, his first acting role. Mel plans to continue to pursue practical and educational experience in filmmaking and continues managing the day-to-day responsibilities of running Red-IX.
Mel A. Gibson
Producer and actress Kristin West is a Texan talent with cosmopolitan appeal. Raised in rural south Texas, West’s training includes the Globe Theatre in London, the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and the University of Texas Semester in Los Angeles Program. West's work has garnered the attention of film festivals. “Miracle Mile Girls”, was screened at the Cannes was also an Official Selection of the Beverly Hills Film, Television & New Media Festival. "Phoenix Song", a project she produced, was an Official Selection of LA New Wave Film Festival, the Indie Fest, Action of Film Festival, Bel Air Film Festival, Shocker Fest International Film Festival, Orlando Film Fest and CINEWEST of Sydney, Australia among many others and won multiple awards. West may best known for her guest star role on Bravo’s Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. Kristin also played Investigator West in Billy Pon’s much talked about horror feature Circus of the Dead, which was shot on location in Odessa, Texas. Her most recent credit is playing the title role of Valentina in Armin Nasseri’s thriller short “Seeking Valentina”.
Vida Ghaffari, Ali Bavarian and Armin Nasseri at the table read of Seeking Valentina.
Vida Ghaffari has been active on the Tinsel town scene as an actress, journalist, and voiceover artist. This talented, charistmatic character actress has recently shot a supporting role in Savage Cinema’s campy horror flick,”Pond Scum,” directed by legendary indie Aussie filmmaker Mark Savage. Vida plays the role of a pious woman betrayed by her abusive husband. Savage was so struck by her acting talent, that he will also cast her in a major supporting role in his upcoming thriller called “Circus of Dread,” starring acting powerhouse Bill Oberst Jr.A comedic actress who also likes to embrace quirky roles, Vida has also played an Iraqi wife in an episode of Comedy Central’s “Mind of Mencia” This comedic powerhouse also landed a co-starring role in much buzzed about FOX sitcom, “The Mindy Project.”Vida also made her web series debut in “Green Manor,” where she acted along side Tony Moran, the original Mike Myers from “Halloween.” She has also acted in many plays at established Hollywood venues such as the Zephyr Theatre and Theatre/Theater. She also has a very strong background in comedy as an improviser, stand-up, and sketch comic. She has performed stand-up at the Improv and the Comedy Store.
With her rich, smart, and sassy signature voice, Vida works steadily as a voiceover artist. Vida recently voiced two characters in an animated film called “Lovesick Fool” created by Emmy-nominated director Dominic Polcino (“The Simpsons,” “Family Guy,” and “King of the Hill”). Acclaimed actors Fred Willard, Lisa Kudrow, and Janeane Garofalo also voiced roles in this film. Vida also freelances as an online and broadcast entertainment correspondent. Her ebullient and charismatic personality has led her to report from many Hollywood red carpet film premieres and galas, where she conducts engaging interviews with a wide range of celebrities such as Oscar winners Melissa Leo and Cuba Gooding Jr. to the likes of internationally known musicians such as Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, and Chris Isaak. With her quick-witted humor and her vivacious temperament, Vida has been coveted by various media outlets as an on-air host and as an associate producer for ATV, GEM TV, and PNG TV. Born and raised in the DC area, she comes from a long line of diplomats, scholars, actors/directors, writers, and poets. Vida wants to uphold the family tradition through the arts and the media. As a print journalist, she has written for the Iran Times International, the Persian Mirror, and Namak Magazine as well as many local papers in the DC metropolitan area.