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Hurt aims to capture a moment of almost total freedom to represent a woman's longing for her lost innocence after a heartbreaking experience. In an attempt to release the pain of a broken heart, she longs for a time when she was young and innocent.



Hurt explores the universal pain of a broken heart. Hurt is an attempt to revisit a time where we felt strong and free, after that delicate moment when we realize we have given all our power to something outside of us.


As a  filmmaker I seek to explore new ways of telling stories and conveying feelings through film. Hurt is a mosaic created by the collaboration of more than ten wonderful artists from different countries and cultural backgrounds. It fascinates me how such a simple short film involved the dedication and generosity of so many people.


I am an art collector. As I develop relationships with different artists, I constantly ask them to send me pieces that they would like to see represented in a visual form. As I receive new material, I start testing what fits together to make each piece stronger and reinforce its meaning, message, and aesthetic.


When I filmed the scene it was intended for educational purposes only. I was teaching children how films work, and they wanted to make their own story. Later, when I replayed this scene, it didn’t fit the horror story plot they developed, but I knew it belonged somewhere. I only needed to find the other pieces. Going through my files I found the music from Hélio Sales and sounds from Victor Castelo. They agreed that it all belonged together, but needed some work. Then Anthony Dean joined us to advise and coordinate the voiceover recording. A few days later, I received a new file with the music, sound, and voice edited to better suit the project. I then found a phrase that I wrote with Paul Douglas McNeill II. It was the inspiration I needed to create the whole poem used in the film. The words and sounds contradict the image to instill in the viewers the longing to be in a place where they can feel free, where pain is released quicker and more gracefully. 


Once we found the right words, I shared the film with a long-time collaborator, Faiyaz Jafri, who immediately embraced the project and came on board as an Executive Producer and Title Artist and provided us with beautiful credits. I also had the pleasure of having Cinematographer, Mark Raker, advising us about the color and the Design Artist Shawn Lewis revising the project. We then brought in Yasmin Santana, to work on the advertising material.


Throughout this time, my associate, Tiffany DeRyuter, and I were working on developing our company, MôTif Productions, and pre-producing the video for the Building Infrastructure Leading to Diversity (BUILD) program at the University of Alaska. Upon following the process of making Hurt, she embraced the project as an executive producer. 

displays an universal concept that everyone can identify with, and we hope that the process to create it and the importance of art in our world will inspire more people to work together and show the importance of diversity in our society.Hurt is a result of true collaboration. I believe that in times like now, where separation and conflicts are so present, we ought to share and spread more stories where people from all over come together to create something positive. Hurt  As you can see, 


Hurt, which is now on the festival circuit, has been selected by LadyFest in New York City, Third Culture International Film Festival in Hong Kong, Urban Mediamakers Film Festival in Atlanta, and Seattle Transmedia & Independent Film Festival, where it won Best Experimental Short Film. Showing Hurt to such diverse audiences made us realize how the exploration of its meaning is still expanding as different people identify with the film. We heard stories from teenagers going through their first broken heart, to a man who didn't have the courage to confess his love to a woman, to women who suffered domestic violence and were still haunted by the hate they experienced. These responses expanded what Hurt meant to us, making it a part of a much bigger mosaic and linking it to a much broader concept.




Actress: Akira Karyn Kusama-Hinte, better known as Kiki, is a New Yorker, who is about to enter second grade. Even though she was born into a family of filmmakers, and enjoys making film and art, her biggest dream now is to become a scientist or teacher.


Director/Writer/Executive Producer: Moema Umann is a Brazilian filmmaker, and co-owner/founder of MoTif Productions. She holds a M.F.A. in directing from The Actors Studio in New York. Her work seeks to explore new ways of telling stories through a mix of film, drawing, animation, photography, and poetry. Through her projects she aims to create opportunities for other underrepresented artists to collaborate.


Producer and Executive Producer: Tiffany DeRuyter is from Montana and is an anthropologist, educator, director, producer and co-owner/founder of MoTif Productions. She currently manages a Building Infrastructure Leading to Diversity (BUILD) program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Tiffany uses filmmaking to bring global issues to light particularly those faced by underrepresented groups.


Writer and Executive Producer: Paul Douglas McNeill II is a writer and English professor living in the Arctic Circle of Alaska and teaching at a tribal college. His poems and short stories have appeared in The Wayne Literary Review, The Maynard, Topology Magazine, Quail Bell Magazine, and Off the Coast. He is also the managing editor of Aglaun, the literary journal of Iḷisaġvik College.


Animator and Executive producer: Faiyaz Jafri was born and raised in rural Holland of Dutch and Pakistani descent. He studied at the Technical University of Delft (MSc) and is a self-taught animation artist and music composer. His work has been exhibited in the form of print, paintings, installations, animations, and sculptures. Jafri’s award-winning films have screened at prestigious festivals and museums.


Sound: Brasília, São Paulo, and Mexico City. He was a singer, arranger and musical director at Cantando na Chuva Productions. Victor composed soundtracks for award winning in Popular Composition in graduatedCasteloVictor films such as White (Clarke), Strange Things Happen (Toro/Khudoko), and Moth (Umann). He’s currently finalizing his album “Redesabito”.Brazil, and was part of chorus and bands in 


Original soundtrack: Helio Sales is a Brazilian multimedia artist with works that gravitate Jr.between sound, vision, and words. Author of many short animated films, soundtracks and two books, he finds in Moema's work a lot of inspiration. 


Acting Coach: Yasmin Santana is a Brazilian actress and designer based in Brooklyn. Yasmin graduated with a BA in Performing Arts from CEFART (Brazil) and has an extensive background in theater and film. She is currently working as a company artist at 3-Legged Dog Art and Technology Center in New York.

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