Northern Film + Media and Northstar Ventures’ content fund has made its latest film investment, with £50,000 going to love story I Am Nasrine.

South Shields-based filmmaker Tina Gharavi has been developing the film for eight years (it was formerly titled Ali in Wonderland) and shot it in 2009.

The story follows a young Iranian girl who comes to live in Tyneside. Ben Kingsley has called the project “an important and much needed film.”

Bridge + Tunnel Productions will use the funding to finish editing the film and drive its commercial development. An educational game is also planned.

“Making I Am Nasrine has been the largest single challenge of my career,” said Gharavi. “Getting this money from Northstar has meant that I can deliver this important vision that so many people have been part of. This really has been a community effort. People in the North East have been incredibly supportive, my crew really pushed themselves to make this happen and our production team and actors literally put their lives at risk when filming scenes in Iran.Whether it’s a success or not will be largely decided by the audience. But it is no small miracle that the work is complete.”

The £2.4 million Finance for Business North East Creative Content Fund is a partnership between Northern Film + Media and Northstar Ventures. Backed by the European Regional Development Fund and One North East, the fund was the first of its kind in the UK regions.

Michelle Cooper of Northstar said: “Diversity is at the heart of the movies that Newcastle-based Bridge + Tunnel produces and we believe that backed by funding from the Creative Content Fund, I Am Nasrine has the potential to achieve great commercial success. It’s an incredibly important cultural asset for this region, and we were delighted to fund the completion of the project.”

Agnes Wilkie, Creative Director at Northern Film & Media added: “Adding investment to a powerful script, celebrity endorsement and cross-platform offering will help I Am Nasrine to both educate and entertain global audiences on important social issues.”