Venture capital firm Northstar Ventures has injected £50,000 into I Am Nasrine, a film backed by actor Sir Ben Kingsley, through the Finance for Business North East Creative Content Fund.
Tina Gharavi, creative director of Bridge + Tunnel Productions, shot the film in 2009, which follows the story of an Iranian girl, Nasrine, who comes to live in Tyneside.
The investment from the fund, a partnership between Northern Film & Media and Northstar Ventures, means Gharavi will be able to push for a distribution deal, according to a statement.
Gharavi, who now lectures at Newcastle University, describes making the film as ‘the largest single challenge of my career’.
She adds, ‘Getting this money from Northstar has meant that I can deliver this important vision that so many people have been part of. This really has been a community effort.’
Northstar investment manager Michelle Cooper says, ‘Diversity is at the heart of the movies that Newcastle-based Bridge + Tunnel produce and we believe that, backed by funding from the Creative Content Fund, I Am Nasrine has the potential to achieve great commercial success.’
Cooper continues, ‘It’s an incredibly important cultural asset for this region and we were delighted to fund the completion of the project.’
The Creative Content Fund was launched a year ago as a two-year pilot scheme with £2.4 million to invest in 18 projects.
Northstar has made 12 investments so far through the fund, with six more projects identified.
Northstar is actively investing two funds in addition, including the £20 million Finance for Business North East Accelerator Fund and the £15 million Finance for Business North East Proof of Concept Fund.