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  • Writer's pictureMaia Directors

Meet Pooya Mohseni

Pooya is an Iranian-American actor, writer, filmmaker, and transgender educator & activist, born and raised in Tehran, now based in New York City. 

Maia Directors:  Hi Pooya! Tell us something you’re currently excited about.  Pooya Mohseni: I'm very excited about a few things right now: first, a short film that I co-wrote/produced/starred in, "Transit : A New York City Fairytale" is going into the editing room, and second, in January I'll be starting principal photography in LA on a new feature film, by an amazing, female driven, creative team. AND an amazing little restaurant opened on my block, with ramen to die for, just in time for the cold weather!!

Maia: How does your MENASA identity inform your artistic work? Pooya: I'm a firm believer that how the world sees us informs how we see the world. As a MENASA artist, feeling like an "other" opens my eyes and heart to a huge variety of experiences of people who are considered "others." And as someone who has had to accept this status, this category, I fully embrace the glory of "otherhood" as my guide.

Maia: What’s a bucket list project? Pooya: I would love to be in a fabulous period piece production that's multicultural, multigenerational and embraces all expressions of gender and sexuality, with care, kindness and love.

Maia: Can you share a big question you're preoccupied with right now? Pooya: "How can I, as a middle class, Iranian American, transgender immigrant, help to build bridges between all the groups I represent - and beyond?"  "How can I, as an actor and activist, take what has been handed down by great artists and warriors, add something of value to it, and share it with the next generation?"

Maia: What’s the weirdest thing about you you’re willing to put in print?  Pooya: I don't see things as normal or weird. But as tough and strong as people think I am, because I've survived this and that, I cry easily when I read a play or see a movie, or even animal videos. So, yeah, I'm a crier.

Want to see more of Pooya's work? Support her short film #transitfairytale, tune into her guest starring debut on Episode 11 of "Law and Order: SVU" on NBC, in January 2020, or find her online here.


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