mah shasan /second logo Mahasanskruti Pune film foundation



Original name: Elaha
English name: Elaha
Year: 2023
Run time: 110 Min
Language: German, Kurdish
Type (Colour/ Black & white): Colour
Country: Germany
Director: Milena Aboyan
Producers: Matthias Greving, Igor Dovgal
cast: Bayan Leyla, Derya Durmaz, Nazmi Kirik, Armin Wahedi, Derya Dilber, Cansu Leyan, Beritan Balci, Hadnet Tesfai, Homa Faghiri, Slavko Popadic
Screenplay: Milena Aboyan, Constantin Hatz
Cinematographer:Christopher Behrmann
Editor: Elias Engelhardt
Sound Designer: Perschya Chehrazi
Music Composer: Kilian Oser
Production Company: Kinescope Film GmbH
World Sales: Pluto Film / Max Mueller Bhavan


  • Berlinale 2023
  • Sydney FF 2023
  • Giffoni FF 2023
  • Calgary IFF 2023
  • Riga IFF 2023

Director’s Selected Filmography:

  • 2018 Was Bleibt (Short)
  • 2018 Der Greteltrick (Short)
  • 2017 Sonne Scheint Über August (Short)
  • 2016 Die Vertreibung Der Elefanten (Short)

Director's Biography:


Milena Aboyan was born a Yazidi Kurd in Armenia in 1992. In 2010 she began a four-year acting training program in Germany. During the program, she played parts in several theatrical productions. After receiving her acting degree, she changed disciplines and began to focus on writing. She started working as an assistant dramatic advisor for an early-evening ARD series. In 2015, she began studying screenwriting at the Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg. In 2019 she won the Emden Screenplay Award. Elaha is her debut feature film. It was already awarded the “Kaiju Cinema Diffusion Prize” at the Locarno FF.


Elaha is a young Kurdish-German woman torn between the unconditional love for her family and her own aspirations in life. Although she cares most about having a good time with her girlfriends and taking care of her younger brother, she has to fight patriarchy while being the perfect daughter. Ultimately, she has to make a decision: To tell the truth or live a life in grand delusion. A psychological journey about emancipation that reveals that only by facing reality, we can be true to ourselves.