Producer Parminder Vir was born in India but, at the age of ten, joined her father in Southampton, England, along with her mother and two sisters. In 1986, she broke into the industry with a film on black filmmaking in Britain. Her work was seen by senior BBC executives, and they extended a job offer. Vir began work as a researcher and worked her way up to assistant producer and, eventually, series producer. She worked at the BBC until 1994, when she founded her own production company, Formation Films. Vir continued to work closely with the BBC and in 1991 produced two programs for the organization including OUR WAR, in which Middle Eastern directors explored the effect of the Gulf War on their respective countries and people. Vir followed OUR WAR with several more international documentaries such as ALGERIA – WOMEN AT WAR, THE SEX WARRIORS AND THE SAMURAI, and AFRICAN EYES ON EUROPE, which was broadcast internationally, and a mini-series on the 50th anniversary of the United Nations.
Throughout her career, Vir has championed ethnic and cultural diversity in the film and television industry, spearheading the Cultural Diversity Network, an industry-wide organization committed to diversity in output and employment. In May 1996, she was appointed the diversity advisor to Carlton Television and in 1999 she was made board director of the UK Film Council, where her main goals were to not only bring black and Asian filmmaking into the mainstream, but to encourage the UK Film Council to look outwards and not just toward the United States. (10/09)
Algeria: Women At War
A film produced by Parminder Vir, 1992, 52 min., Color
ALGERIA: WOMEN AT WAR offers a rare insight into the key role Algerian women played in their country’s liberation struggle from the French thirty year...