Film International: To introduce you to our readers, I start from clichéd questions. When and where you have been born? When you left country and how’s your education?
Mojgan Gomroki: I was born in Ahvaz in 1969. I studied until the third grade of elementary school in that city before moving to Tehran where I studied for another two years. I immigrated to the United States along with my family concurrent with the Islamic Revolution in 1978 when I was 10. I continued my studies in the United States and got a doctorate in law.
FI: Was any other member of your family or relatives interested in cinema or arts?
MG: My uncle, Gholamreza Gomroki, has been active in production and distribution of feature films in Iran for years. My employment as advisor to the American film production and distribution companies was a mere accident and the last thing on my mind.
FI: That is, you had no interest in cinema or arts?
MG: No, this is not the case. I have always been fond of films, but never thought that one day I would be involved in them in a country like the United States. Although I and my colleagues usually work behind the scenes, I personally believe that Hollywood is a combination of films and law because 90 percent of activities in the United States are carried out through consultation, especially contractual activities, and if that consultant is a lawyer, so much the better.
FI: How you changed from law to Hollywood studios and how this post was given to you?
MG: Many years ago, when I worked as an attorney, I got involved in a case which took 1.5 years and totally exhausted me; so that, I was completely fed-up with courts and lawsuits.
FI: What was that case about?
MG: It involved a major case of fraud and I represented the plaintiff who had been deceived and lost a lot of money. I got into a complicated maze and after 1.5 years I chided myself for having become a lawyer. One day, I was talking to one of my friends and I told my friend that I liked to help people and be in contact with them, but not in this way. My friend proposed that I should try public relations. My friend worked for Paramount Company and told me that the company needed somebody for public relations office of its awards division. I told myself that my chances of getting that post were one in a million, but my friend had met manager of that division and had introduced me to her. My friend had told her that I specialized in law and enjoyed good public relations and were looking for a new job. The manager interviewed me and I was employed. I took up the post about four days later.
FI: Is a degree in law necessary to get a job with a Hollywood company?
MG: No. However, certain regulations should be observed during all stages of a film from pre-production to screening and even for winning an award. Filling a single form is not all that is needed to support production stages and companies are looking for people with good command of those regulations. ...