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PREMIERE: It's 1990s Romania, and a hard working mother receives a gift from her daughter.

On her mother’s birthday, 9-year old Ana takes on a very important mission: make her mother smile for the first time in a very long time.

Ana is Director Stephanie Lemesianou's debut narrative short. Stephanie's inspiration: her mother's childhood in a poverty-stricken home. A three person female cast shines a light on the shared hardship of a community, regardless of age or generation. A time and place where the parameters of poverty is shown here through the simple swap of eggs, milk and flour in exchange for service.

Ana’s mother's birthday falls on the day of her attaining a crucially important job. But ruled by the pressure and stress of life her mother's birthday falls by the wayside. In a childlike purity, Ana decides she must lift her mother's spirits and rebuild a connection that is left diminished by outside struggles.

Stephanie Lemesianou 'Growing up, I was always an observer, attuned to the difficult realities that shaped the adults around me. Hearing about my mother’s childhood experiences and the pressures she faced, I wanted to explore that sense of responsibility and the heart-warming innocence of a young child. When life hits hard, we tend to put all our faith in that one thing that can make everything better. This story is for the ones who take it upon themselves to make miracles happen.'


Writer/Director: Stephanie Lemesianou @stephlemes

Producer: Audrey Larson @audreylarson87

Director of Photography & Camera Operator Tairan Li @james_lee_whoa

2nd Director of Photography: Lilena Marinou @lilena_marinou

Assistant Camera: Emerson Duggan @embo920 & Yuang Liu @yuang.liu.24
Editor: Elliot Farinaro @elliot.farinaro
Production Designer: Kaitlyn O Bryon @kaitlynobryon

Unit Production Manager: Emma Grasso Levine @emma.grasso.levine

1st Assistant Director: Simeon Hu @simeonhu  

Sound Mix & Design: Julia Skubisz

Color: Patrick Badescu @its_me_patty_b

Gaffer: Proud Sornpaisarn

Grip & Still photography: Matthew Lai @matthewlai906

Boom Ops: Alexandra D'Yan @alexdyan_ & Kathryn Ly-Bishop @kathrynlybishop