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

《化妆间》(The Powder Room)
女人的故事 #1

由Zoe Cassavetes 執導

2

木塔(MUTA)
女人的故事 #2

由Lucrecia Martel 執導

3

「女性服裝」
女人的故事 #3

由Giada Colagrande 執導

4

「天色已晚」
女人的故事 #4

由Massy Tadjedin 執導

5

#5 「門」
女人的故事 #5

由Ava Du Vernay 執導

6

《LE DONNE DELLA VUCCIRIA》
女人的故事 #6

由Hiam Abbass 執導

7

「Spark and Light」
女人的故事 #7

由金素英執導

8

「Somebody」
女人的故事 #8

由 Miranda July 執導

9

《禮服》(De Djess)
女人的故事 #9

由Alice Rohrwacher 執導

10

《三顆鈕釦》(Les 3 Boutons)
女人的故事 #10

由Agnès Varda 執導

11

「種子」
女人的故事 #11

由河瀨直美執導

12

《那一天》(That One Day)
女人的故事 #12

由Crystal Moselle 執導

13

《卡門》(Carmen)
女人的故事 #13

由Chloë Sevigny 執導

14

《歷史幻象的終結》((The [End) of History Illusion])
女人的故事 #14

由Celia Rowlson-Hall 執導

15

《你好,公寓》(Hello Apartment)
女人的故事 #15

由Dakota Fanning 執導

16

"The Wedding Singer's Daughter"
女人的故事 #16

由Haifaa Al-Mansour 執導

17

"Shako Mako"
女人的故事 #17

由Hailey Gates 執導

18

《Brigitte》
女人的故事 #18

由LYNNE RAMSAY執導