Profile | Eric Nazarian
July 24, 1976Profile
He may have gotten his start depicting angels in the blues, but Eric Nazarian’s cinematic journey has unfurled along what our elders would call a կանաչ ճանապարհ (“a green path,” meaning blessed with good fortune). A passionate storyteller by way of film, screenwriting, and photojournalism, Nazarian depicts the voices and stories of those who have been silenced, forgotten, or ignored and, in doing so, hopes to bring to light the truth and awaken the imagination in all of us.
- What is your time asking of you?
- On his short animated film, Aurora The artist has many responsibilities to shed a light on injustices and bring to light the truth, but all of humanity has a responsibility to tell those stories.” Aurora, depicts the real-life story of Aurora Mardiganian, a Genocide survivor who later starred in a Hollywood film about the horrors she endured. During filming, she broke her leg but was forced by Hollywood bullies to not only keep going—but to tie the injury into the plot, making the culprits the ‘Turkish tyrants.’ “Aurora was a supersurvivor—first of the brutality of the Genocide, then of the brutality of Hollywood,” explains Eric. Aurora premiered at the inaugural Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity ceremony, which recognizes leading humanitarians from all over the world. Pictured is a still from the film.
Nazarian demonstrates an uncanny affinity for the language of cinema… this is clearly another filmmaker to watch out for in the coming years… like the late Cassavetes, Nazarian demonstrates an uncanny ability to compose the most striking images and memorable performances on a shoestring budget.
- Turin Film Festival
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His projects run the gamut—from documentaries on nearly-forgotten cultural relics to award-winning short films to beautiful animation videos for nonprofit campaigns. The list goes on. Eric Nazarian’s uphill climb in the world of cinema has been meticulous yet approached with the levity of a schoolboy, still excited at the prospect of living out his childhood dream every day. Tall, gregarious, yet almost unbelievably humble, his cadence is distinctly Angelino, but his prose reads like a carefully crafted Faulkner novel—fitting, as the writer was one of his childhood influences. Somehow, we managed to snag the busy filmmaker for a chat, and with the help of a little ale from the Irish pub across the street, he opened up about a variety of topics—not the least of which, his artistic muses and mistresses, inspirations and heroes.
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