Based on a true story, Paris Song tells the story of small-town singer Amre Kashaubayev’s journey from Kazakhstan to Paris to compete in an international singing competition at the 1925 Paris Expo. Unknown to most of the world, this shy performer with a remarkable talent steals the show every time he sets foot on the stage. Amre forms a beautiful and unlikely friendship with American songwriter George Gershwin and, surprisingly, is embraced by the high-culture Paris elite, who receive him with rapturous applause. In a strong directorial debut, Jeff Vespa’s story of this Kazakhstani folk hero, played magnificently by Sanjar Madi, illuminates what it means to be an outsider and to struggle against a repressive regime, and is proof that determination and talent can overcome adversity. —James Bruckner
Jeff Vespa is one of the co-founders of the entertainment photo agency WireImage. His photography has been featured in numerous publications, including Vanity Fair, The New York Times, and Vogue. In 2018, Vespa directed his first feature film, Paris Song, starring Abbie Cornish. He also directed the short film Nosebleed, starring David Arquette, which screened at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival during Critics Week. Vespa's producing credits include the documentary $ellebrity, which focuses on the history of publicity, gossip and paparazzi in Hollywood. He also produced three films for the fine art photographer Alex Prager, whose short films Despair and Face in the Crowd screened at the Museum of Modern Art. Vespa previously worked at New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. He attended the Master's Program for Producing at the American Film Institute.
Cast/Featuring: Sanjar Madi, Abbie Cornish, Ben Aldridge, Miha Rodman, Christian Hillborg, Philip Brodie
Executive Producer(s): Akhat Ibrayev, Joel Michaely
Producer(s): Alidar Utemuratov, Jeff Vespa, Cary Granat, Ed Jones
Director(s): Jeff Vespa
Screenwriter(s): Ben van der Veen
Cinematographer(s): Maksim Osadchiy
Editor(s): Brian Denny
Production Designer(s): Ekaterina Zaletaeva
Composer(s)/Music: Dave Holden