2018 Digital Shorts


A millennial, multicultural, Cinderella searches for her own magical 'happily ever after.'

Length6 min. 53 sec.
DirectorAJ Simmons


Pitch video


Yasmina, a daydreaming, newly appointed line cook, struggles to get through her first night on the job in the kitchen of a bustling Afghan fusion restaurant under the strict supervision of the kitchen matriarch, who also, just happens to be her mother. When the tantalizing opportunity of a night to remember magically appears, Yasmina’s life is forever changed as she discovers that indeed, the key to finding her own ‘happily ever after’ lies in the embodiment of loving herself unconditionally. An enchantingly unique twist on the immigrant story, Yasmina is a dream-like, character driven, deconstructed fairytale exploring the intersections of identity and coming of age, while shedding light on a cultural conflict many 1st generation youth are constantly negotiating.

The team

We believe change begins with action: which is why we are a team helmed by Women of Colour driven to create a work environment in which respect, equity, diversity and inclusion are the foundation for the collaborations we endeavour to facilitate.

Profile picture of AJ Simmons
AJ SimmonsDirector, Writer
Profile picture of Andy Alvarez
Andy AlvarezProducer
Profile picture of Kaayla Whachell
Kaayla WhachellCamera Operator, Lighting


Production Design

The gorgeous setting for the world of 'Yasmina.' Locally owned and run by Afghan brothers who upon migrating to Canada, their immigrant experience confirmed to them the importance of creating spaces where a vibrant cultural exchange between East and West could take place.Wanting to break beyond the conventional ethnic restaurants they encountered in Canada, they created East is East as a hub for strong men and women of diverse cultures to feel at home in a place that was beyond boundaries.
Karen Flamenco, the company  we will featuring in Yasmina, performing at East is East.
A warm, dreamy space with walls crafted from Himalayan rock salt, ornate Persian carpets, ceiling mandala's, and nature-inspired furnishings. This colour palette reflects the warmth and saturation of the dining room which is a stark contrast to the world of the kitchen and demonstrates that Yasmina does not feel quite at home in the public area of the restaurant either.
INT. Restaurant location
Balancing the warm earth tones of the food, the costumes of the Kholas (Afghan women working in the kitchen) and the yellow undertones in the colour of their skin with the harsh greys and whites of a standard commercial kitchen. With a little under half the story taking place in the kitchen, finding this balance while using the lack of bright warm colours to support the character Yasmina's struggle to feel at ease in the world of the Kitchen.
Utilizing light, shadow, and a blend of the warm reds and yellows of East is East with the cool blues of an urban nightclub, this palette is the transition zone from the world that Yasmina knows, into the magical world of the nightclub and the adventure in store.
This gorgeous, warm, womb-like palette blends club like lighting and shadows with the warmth of the pinks and violets in decor which create a sense of magic, sensuality and mystery as Yasmina experiences connection and understanding with her own desires.