Dutch filmmaker Mijke de Jong’s latest film “Layla M.” follows a Dutch-Moroccan teenager who joins a Islamist cell in the Middle East. 18-year-old Layla (Nora El Koussour) lives in Amsterdam with her family and believes that anti-Islamic sentiment is becoming a dangerous trend. After being arrested for joining in a demonstration, Layla drops out of school, leaving the Netherlands, and marries a jihadist. But when they arrive in the Middle East, Layla discovers her gender bars her from much participation and starts yearning for her former life, all the while her young husband threatens to make a big sacrifice. Watch the exclusive trailer for the film below.
Mijke de Jong has been directing films and television for over 25 years. Her films “Katia’s Sister,” about a 13-year-old girl who loses her mother and older sister to prostitution, and the doc-fiction hybrid “Frailer,” about an actress’ battle with cancer, both premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in 2008 and 2014 respectively. Her other films include “Broos,” “Stages,” “Joy,” and most recently, “Stop Acting Now.”
“Layla M.” premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in the Platform section. It will screen today, September 14th, and Saturday, September 17th. International sales are being handled by Beta Cinema.