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Nabila Bushra and Farah Bouamar
Nabila and Farah are the founders of Lost Film, a non-profit production company that produces horror films critiquing society. In the past year, Lost received the “Culture and Creative Pilot 2021” award from the federal government. Nabila Bushra and her colleague were also named in Focus Magazine’s list of 100 Women of 2021.
Germany is made up of so many different histories, life experiences and realities. However, mainstream media still has difficulties incorporating these complex and enriching, whether that being in films or entrepreneurially. This is where we come in. Our goal is to create accessibility for people, who are underrepresented and to create structural change, which reflects this.
“We are inspired and interested in themes, which are usually neglected and yet play a crucial role in our lives.”
What motivated you to start your business?
Last year, we shot our first socio-critical horror short film. The production of the film was successful, which lead us to the decision to start our production company. The company aims to focus not only on producing socio-critical horror short films, but also create opportunities for young talents, who often are not given access and opportunities in the film industry.
What were some of the challenges that you faced when starting your company?
Especially at the beginning, you need to invest a lot of time, money, and patience, which can at times be really frustration because the output is not immediately apparent.
Despite these challenges, what do you feel has empowered you during this journey?
Conversations with other entrepreneurs and social exchanges with friends helped us through this stressful phase and allowed us to grow and come out stronger. We have really learned the importance of continuity and perseverance.
Through the Federal Government's award for Cultural and Creative Pilots 2021 we were given the opportunity to participate in a mentoring program. This experience was great because we were able to discuss our concerns with experts and exchange ideas as part of the mentoring program.
So Nabila, how do you think migrant female founders can be supported so that it's easier for them to become entrepreneurs?
Having different spaces and networks for migrant entrepreneurs to share and exchange their experiences and visions can be empowering. Role models can play a huge role by sharing their knowledge and experience and empowering other migrant women to realize their own ideas. In addition to that, events such as networking events, workshops, and funding programs, can be enriching and helpful, when organized in a way diversity-sensitive way.
How do you feel that your cultural background influenced your career or your work, especially that your co-founder has a different background than yours?
Fortunately, because of our contexts, we are able to draw from different sources and appreciate this asset, which distinguishes our company. Our different approaches allow us to process our work, the themes that concern us and our projects in a more differentiated way, to execute our ideas and work in a more creative and thoughtfully evaluated perspective.
What is your personal tip for women with a migration background who want to start a company?
If you have an idea that you really believe in, then trust yourself and overcome your self-doubts and your phantoms. Let yourselves be inspired by role models, create a network and move forward step by step at your own pace!
From your point of view, what are the benefits for the ecosystem in Germany, when having more migrant female founders?
We know many women, especially migrant women, who have founded their own businesses because of consternation, precarity, or necessity. For that reason, they emphasize the importance of social impact and societal change. As a result of this, the economic system will be confronted with new dynamics because the needs and issues of the founders are gaining attention and visibility. This creates the opportunity for sustainable and gender-equitable company culture.
Thank you so much!