The Night Thief is a warmhearted drama set in the suburbs of Helsinki, Finland. It tells the story of a Somali man, Farah, whose car starts to disappear mysteriously at night.
Although the car always shows up in the morning, Farah starts to run late from work, and fears that he could lose his job. Farah’s wife is moving to Finland from Somalia and if Farah were to get fired, his wife’s residency permit would be in danger. Due to the circumstances, Farah decides to do whatever it takes to catch the thief. In the end, things take an unexpected turn when Farah finally faces the person who has been stealing his car.
The Night Thief is a drama that is inspired by true events. My younger brother’s car was ”borrowed” by a total stranger at night and the car was returned either in the middle of the night or the next day. This continued for weeks and caused my brother a lot of frustration, as he was on the verge of losing his job due to continually being late from work.
My brother did everything he could to catch this stranger but he never succeeded in doing so. Eventually, my brother’s car broke down on a highway and it was scrapped. He never managed to encounter the stranger. I wanted to make this story into a film because I found it interesting and worth sharing.
The story does not only deal with the car but also a family reunion. The main character, Farah, has been waiting for a long time to reunite with his wife Habiba, who lives in Africa. When the reunion is finally about to happen, an invisible neighbor threatens to ruin it all. The story is also about commitment, unemployment and friendship – everyday issues around the world.
Fuaad Amin (Farah)
Amin has previously appeared in the feature film Changes directed by Sami Laitinen. He graduated in the spring 2017 from University of Applied Sciences and works on now in the chemical industry.
Aaliya Mustafa (Habiba)
Mustafa is based in Rotterdam, Netherlands and was discovered through an audition. The Night Thief is her debut performance. Her daily job is in communications.
Kaye Dulla (Jama)
Dulla has acted in music videos and in the feature film Changes directed by Sami Laitinen. He studied chemistry in London but has since returned to Finland and is aiming for a career in fashion.
Elina Knihtilä (Boss)
Knihtilä works as a professor of acting in The Theatre Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki. She has 25 years of experience acting in films, television and theater. She has performed in films such as Distractions, The House of Branching Love and Matti: Hell Is for Heroes. She has won two Jussi Awards (Finnish “Oscars”), one for best actress in Good Son and one for best actress in supporting role for Falling Angels.
Joonas Saartamo (Heikki)
Saartamo is an actor and musician who graduated from The Theatre Academy in 2012. He has worked diversely in theater, television and film. Saartamo has acted in films such as The Mine, Gloriously Wasted, Fanatics and Beauty and the Bastard. He won a Jussi Award (Finnish “Oscar”) for best actor in Silence, set in an assembly centre during World War II. Saartamo is also known as the rap artist Jonde.
Saara Kotkaniemi (Pregnant Woman)
Kotkaniemi is an actor who graduated from The Theatre Academy in 2012. She has acted on stage, TV (Welcome to Texas, Bordertown) and films (The Mine, Guilt, 95).
Director-scriptwriter Khadar Ahmed
Khadar Ahmed is a Finnish filmmaker of Somali descent. His first screenplay Citizens won a screenwriting competition organized by the Finnish Film Foundation and Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE. Later the film went on to win the second prize “Leopard of Tomorrow” at Locarno International Film Festival. In 2015, Ahmed was selected to the Cinéfondation Residence where he developed his feature directorial debut The Grave Digger. Khadar Ahmed has written and directed a short fiction We Don’t Celebrate Christmas (2014), and written a feature-length fiction Unexpected Journey (2017) which premiered theatrically across Finland in March 2017. Currently Ahmed is based in Paris, France.
Cinematographer Arttu Peltomaa
Peltomaa graduated from Helsinki Film School (nowadays known as Aalto University School of Art and Design) in 2009 as a cinematographer. He has shot documentary films as well as feature films such as Latch, Changes and Born in Heinola.
Production Designer Aki Tarkka
Tarkka’s career began couple of years ago as a production design trainee in Finnish TV series Roba. The man of talent found quickly more work from the industry, and has since worked as production designer assistant on commercials and feature films. His first film as a production designer was the short film Door. Tarkka studies Design for Theatre, Film and Television at Aalto University School of Art and Design.
Costume Designer Anu Gould
Paris-based Gould’s career as costume designer and costumer spans over 20 years, including films by Bertrand Bonello and Olivier Assayas. Gould has worked on the films l’Apollinide and Saint Laurent that both won César awards for the best costume design. From the famous stars she has dressed Michael Madsen, Eva Mendes, Vanessa Paradise and Natalie Portman. In recent years Gould has also worked on Finnish films such as Apeiron and Changes. Beside film she has also done projects at The Comédie-Française.
Editor Dimitri Okulov
Okulov has edited short films, documentaries and video art. At the moment he is working on TV series. Okulov’s recent works include Kimmo and Pelimies which both have been nominated for Venla award (Finnish Emmys).
Sound Designer Mikko Roisko
Mikko has graduated from Metropolia University of Applied Sciences in 2013, where he did the Degree Programme in Film and Television, specializing in sound. He has worked as sound designer on commercials and as a sound recorder and boom operator on multiple TV and film productions. Roisko also publishes his own music under the name Northbound.
Composer Totte Rautiainen
Rautiainen is a sound designer, composer and music producer. He does it all from commercials and documentaries to fiction and brand films and everything in between. Rautiainen’s musical journey started at the age of seven, when he first touched the black and white keys of an accordion. Outside the office hours, Totte is still playing, composing and producing music from punk to The Rapping Grandma of Punavuori.
Make Up Designer Elisa Koivuniemi
Koivuniemi is a hairdresser and barber who is obsessed with the moving image. She has worked on numerous short films, commercials and music videos. She has also embellished artist for album covers and promo pictures. In addition Koivuniemi works as educator at beauty industry and has even time to serve customers at hairdressings saloons and barbershops.
Producer Mete Sasioglu
Sasioglu is a producer and CEO of Sons of Lumière, a Helsinki-based company that makes international films of topics often related to global problems and phenomena. He has studied film and television in Metropolia University of Applied Sciences. Sasioglu has produced fiction films, documentaries as well as commercials and music videos. He is also manager of Castbook, one of Finland’s biggest networks for actors and performers. Sasioglu has background in print and radio journalism.
Producer Mete Sasioglu
Tel. +358 40 772 1167