It’s nighttime in 1980s Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Glittery and glamorous heels climb out of cars. Women shrouded in traditional black abayas make their way into a wedding hall. There, they reveal what’s underneath: dazzling dresses and wild hair. Their true selves set free, unseen by male gaze. There are strict segregation rules in Saudi weddings. All eyes and ears are on the wedding singer; until the electricity cuts out suddenly. “This is the worst wedding singer ever,” guests mutter, condescendingly. Will the young daughter manage to save her mother’s dignity?

The Wedding Singer’s Daughter, directed by Haifaa Al-Mansour, is the 16th commission from Miu Miu Women’s Tales. The acclaimed short-film series invites today’s most profound and original female directors to investigate vanity and femininity in the 21st century.

Based in Los Angeles, Haifaa Al-Mansour is considered the first female Saudi filmmaker. Her debut feature, Wadjda (2013) -about a rebellious girl who wants to break societal laws and ride her bicycle- was a breakout hit, and the first ever foreign-language Oscar entry from Saudi Arabia. As the country undergoes unprecedented cultural reform, which has recently seen women be given the right to drive and the first cinemas open to the public, Al-Mansour’s next film, The Perfect Candidate, will be the first feature to be supported by the new national Saudi Film Council. The comedy- drama follows a young female physician who dreams of participating in male-dominated, municipal elections.

“Trying to build things up, step by step, is very important,” says Al-Mansour. “Patience pays off.” Indeed, Saudi pop- singer Rotana Tarabzouni — who plays the lead character in The Wedding Singer’s Daughter, and composed the music with The Real Satta — describes herself and the women of her generation as, “the necessary and exciting growing pains of any society going through a reform and artistic renaissance.” About the marital setting of her new Miu Miu film, Al- Mansour believes that, “weddings are the actual mirror of society in Saudi Arabia: segregated, fragmented, along gender and class. I wanted to tell the story of those people, and capture that tenderness.”

Al-Mansour says that Women’s Tales have been an inspiring project because, “It’s very important for women to tell their stories. And sometimes it’s hard.” In this new story, the singer’s young daughter is the unlikely heroine. She ignores the other girls’ scornful judgment, and instead uses her nimble mind, just like an independent film-director. “For me, the little girl represents the future,” reveals Al-Mansour, “and the future belongs to outsiders.”

Women's Tales archive

1

“더 파우더 룸 (The Powder Room)”
우먼스 테일 #1

감독 조 카사베츠 (Zoe Cassavetes)

2

“뮤타 (Muta)”
우먼스 테일 #2

감독 루크레이사 마르텔 (Lucrecia Martel)

3

“더 우먼 드레스 (The Woman Dress)”
우먼스 테일 #3

감독 지아다 콜라그란데 (Giada Colagrande)

4

“ 잇츠 게팅 레이트 (It’s Getting Late)”
우먼스 테일 #4

감독 마시 태지딘 (Massy Tadjedin)

5

“더 도어 (The Door)”
우먼스 테일 #5

감독 아바 듀버네이 (Ava Du Vernay)

6

“르 돈느 델라 부치리아 (Le donne della vucciria)”
우먼스 테일 #6

감독 히암 압바스 (Hiam Abbass)

7

“스파크 앤 라이트 (Spark and Light)”
우먼스 테일 #7

감독 김소영

8

“썸바디 (Somebody)”
우먼스 테일 #8

감독 미란다 줄라이 (Miranda July)

9

“데 드제스(De Djess)”
우먼스 테일 #9

감독 엘리스 로르와처 (Alice Rohrwacher)

10

“레스 3 보톤스 (Les 3 Boutons)”
우먼스 테일 #10

감독 아그네스 바르다 (Agnes Varda)

11

씨앗(Seed)
우먼스 테일 #11

가와세 나오미(Naomi Kawase)가

12

“댓 원 데이 (That one Day)”
우먼스 테일 #12

감독 크리스탈 모셀 (Crystal Moselle)

13

"Carmen"
우먼스 테일 #13

감독 끌로에 셰비니 (Chloë Sevigny)

14

“(디 [앤드) 오브 히스토리 일루젼] (The [End) of History Illusion]”
우먼스 테일 #14

감독 첼리아 롤슨 홀 (Celia Rowlson-Hall)

15

"Hello Apartment"
우먼스 테일 #15

감독 다코타 패닝 (Dakota Fanning)

16

"The Wedding Singer's Daughter"
우먼스 테일 #16

감독 하이파 알 만수르 (Haifaa Al-Masour)

17

"Shako Mako"
우먼스 테일 #17

감독 헤일리 게이츠(Hailey Gates)

18

"브리짓(Brigitte)"
우먼스 테일 #18

감독 린 램지(Lynne Ramsay)