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The 9/11 attacks are a pivotal moment in the film, which is showing out of competition at the festival.

The movie also marks a watershed for Nair, who was awarded Venice’s top prize, the Golden Lion, for her movie “Monsoon Wedding” just days before the World Trade Center collapsed. She had left Venice to promote that movie in Toronto when the attacks occurred.

It took her a week to get back to New York and her husband and son.

`’It was quite shocking when I got back because it felt like images I had seen in my part of the world, refugee camps, helicopters, a sense of war, a war zone, and it was in our backyard,” she said. “And so suddenly, (New York) became a place where people who looked like us were `the other.’ And that was painful, and that was also part of the inspiration to try to make this film.”

This year’s festival ends Sept. 8.