Shooting out of an open cable car in the Swiss Alps at 9000 feet; getting followed by Pakistani intelligence officials in Kashmir; smuggling a camera into the holiest Muslim site in the world; narrowly avoiding terrorists near the Afghan border; these are the many things that Nausheen Dadabhoy has done to “get the shot.”
Before she was a nomadic cinematographer, Nausheen was a Southern California native who received her MFA in Cinematography from the American Film Institute.
Since graduating she has lensed a number of narrative and documentary films: most recently J'adore Nawal for Lena Dunham's HBO documentary series Lenny which premiered at Sundance, Academy Award Live Action Short nominee La femme et le TGV (The Railroad Lady), and Aaja a music video for Riz Ahmed's hip hop group The Swet Shop Boys. Nausheen's films have played in competition at festivals like TIFF, AFI Fest, Locarno and IDFA. Her clients include Field of Vision, HBO, A&E and MSNBC.
In 2011 Nausheen relocated to Pakistan shooting films like Josh (Against the Grain), and Downward Dog which were at the forefront of Pakistan’s New Wave of filmmaking.
Working on four different continents and traveling to over 25 countries still didn’t prepare her for filming 20 Regeln für Sylvie (20 Rules! for Sylvie), which helped her realize that it was possible to shoot a film when everyone around you was speaking in Swiss-German or French, but her ability to order a “café au lait, s'il vous plaît” was next to worthless on a film set.
Nausheen not only shoots with cameras but with a bow and arrows as well, her eclectic interests range from archery, to fine art, to superhero comic books, and urban exploration. As a Pakistani-American she has straddled two cultures all her life. That often gives her a unique perspective as an insider and outsider. Her singular background and experiences come together to inspire her as a storyteller and help her create visuals that resonate across many cultures. Nausheen has been a Film Independent Project:Involve Fellow, a Berlin Talents participant and is a current Firelight Fellow. She is based in New York, Los Angeles and Karachi, where she has broken boundaries to become the only female cinematographer in Pakistan.