Zanyar Adami, Journalist & Movie Director


Zanyar Adami at the set of the movie "Shadi". Photo by Bina Qeredaxi/2013.

Zanyar Adami at the set of the movie “Shadi”. Photo by Bina Qeredaxi/2013.

I was born during the war between Iran and Iraq in a remote small Kurdish village. My mother was a guerrilla soldier and had to give birth to me in secret. My father was also part of the guerrilla that fought against the Iran regime during the eighties.

I grew up with my grandparents and their four children. We had to flee from village to village with bombs as our constant companions. First we ended up in a refugee camp on the Iraqi side of Kurdistan, and then we continued to flee to the city of Suleymaniah.

I was seriously ill and needed medical care. When I was five years old, my parents sent me to Sweden to save my life. I had to live with a foster family for one year until my parents came to Sweden.

Today I make movies about my family’s flight to share with the world how war affects family relations. I have directed several movies, including “The guerilla son” – a documentary about me and my father and how we reconcile with each other and our war memories. In cooperation with UNHCR I have directed “Shadi” – about an 11 year old girl who is being sent alone to Sweden.



Zanyar Adami is a renowned journalist and movie director. His debut film, “The guerilla son” has been internationally awarded and broadcasted in several countries. The movie “Shadi” highlighting the plight of separated refugee children has been broadcasted in Sweden and at several film festivals, and is the second part of a trilogy. Zanyar is currently working on the third part, “Maryam”. With his personal movies, Zanyar aims to increase understanding for refugees by reaching into people’s hearts.

Watch the “Shadi” (“Krigsduvor”) trailer:

1 family torn apart by war is too many

Learn more about our work with refugees at