Student Film Director Nominated For Best Story In Film Festival

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ST. LOUIS, MO. (KPLR) – He might only be a sophomore in high school, but that's not stopping Faraz Ahmad from getting noticed for his filmmaking.

'Yeah, I was very happy when I received the news that I'd been nominated,' says Faraz Ahmad recounting the notice he`d been nominated.

His short "Battles with Food" has been nominated for best story, picture, sound and editing, by an international film festival.

'I have friends who have eating disorders and I've seen the way they deal with it,' says Ahmad.  'It's really hard to watch how it impacts their lives and what they have to go through.'

Ahmad says he used to be an overweight and remembers a doctor visit that changed his life.

'She had a serious talk with me that you are at risk of having heart disease and diabetes and for an eight year old that's like a traumatic thing to hear,' says Ahmad.  'I didn't want to have to go through that.  So my Mom and I made a plan with the pediatrician and I got a trainer and a nutritionist and worked with them and then I slowly began to lose weight.'

He turned his personal battle with food into fodder for his film that will now take him half way around the world.

'I don't need to point it out,' says Patrick Clark.  'I'll let you point it out.'

'Sure,' says fine arts instructor Andrew Newman.  'Right over here is this peninsula and here's the Persian Gulf and you've got Qatar right here.'

Andrew Newman attended the THIMUN Qatar Northwestern Film Festival.

It's a partnership between that university and the Hague International Model United Nations

'I met so many wonderful people in the Middle East because of the war and our concept of Arab world as this negative place,' says Andrew Newman.  'I had such a positive experience over there that I really wanted to share with the students.'

And now the students are sharing their experiences.

'I hope that people understand that if they see someone who is overweight or dealing with an eating disorder not to judge them and just try to think about what they're going through,' says Ahmad.

Who knows, that kind of perspective might take you half way around the world.

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Email: patrick.clark@tvstl.com