LA shorts

Indian American actress/filmmaker Shivaani Sharma’s new film as an actor/producer is “Cul-De-Sac,” which deals with postpartum depression. The film has been selected to be screened at the prestigious LA Shorts International Film Festival. (Shivaani Sharma/Facebook photo)

“Cul-De-Sac,” a short film aiming to ignite a conversation on the stigmatized issues of postpartum depression and postpartum psychosis, will be screened at the 23rd annual LA Shorts International Film Festival, which will showcase films from several countries, including the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Poland, the U.K, Denmark, Ireland, France, Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Japan, China and Australia.

The film starring Indian American filmmaker/actor Shivaani Sharma will premiere July 23 at 3:15 p.m. at Laemmle Noho 7 in Los Angeles, Calif.

John J. Lozada serves as one of the two producers on the film which is directed by Cara Lawson. 

Here’s the film’s synopsis: On the morning of her annual Memorial Day barbecue, a young mother, Jiya (Shivaani Sharma), is threatened by tormenting symptoms of postpartum psychosis. Overwhelmed, she tries to suppress the sense of dread as her mental state worsens, but her sense of reality begins to deteriorate when the final guest arrives – her mother.

Four million babies are born in the United States every year. Statistically, one in every seven mothers suffers from postpartum depression, and one in every thousand mothers suffers from postpartum psychosis, Sharma told India-West. “Till today, the symptoms associated with the blues of parenthood are rarely medically diagnosed, reported, or even discussed within a cultural and social context,” she said.

“The blues of parenthood are discredited in many societal discussions and I believe that ‘Cul-De-Sac’ provokes dialogue crucial to Indian American audiences,” Sharma added.

Sharma’s other credits include shorts such as “Delivery Guy,” “Kevin” and “Noble.”

LA Shorts International Film Festival ranks among the most prestigious and largest short film festivals in the world. The festival is accredited by the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, the British Academy of Film and Television Arts and the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television.

(See India-West exclusive on post-partum depression in the Indian American community here:

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