Directing photo

Hena Ashraf is a writer-director who creates character-based multi-layered narratives, showing how the specific is universal. She focuses primarily on stories about migrants and migrant life, as migration is such a near-universal and disruptive experience. Born in London to working-class parents from the subcontinent, she spent her early years in the United Kingdom before im/migrating to America. Hena’s work has been supported by the Brooklyn Arts Council, Tribeca Film Institute, the Islamic Scholarship Fund, the Norris Foundation, BAFTA Los Angeles, MPAA, Wasserman, the Adrienne Shelly Foundation, an ISF National Film Grant, Telluride FilmLAB, and more. She has an MFA in Film Directing from UCLA and is based in Los Angeles.

She is currently finishing The Return, a documentary-hybrid film informed by her relationship with her late father.

Hena tends to disappear into her headphones, is a budding DJ, a lifelong stutterer, a linguist in a parallel universe somewhere, and she is not a fan of social media (meaning, you won’t find her there).