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A Family's Perilous Journey In 'Midnight Traveler'

A scene from the documentary,
A scene from the documentary, "Midnight Traveler," which was shot entirely on cell phones.

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On today's show:

Running From The Taliban

(Starts at 7:45)

The new documentary, "Midnight Traveler," is a first-person account of an almost unimaginable, years-long journey of an Afghan family in search for asylum. The entire film was shot by the family members themselves on three cell phones, with the footage sent out periodically via SD cards to their friend and fellow filmmaker, Emelie Mahdavian in the U.S. After the Taliban puts a bounty on filmmaker Hassan Fazili's head, he and his family — wife Fatima Hussaini and young daughters Nargis and Zahra — flee the country. Denied asylum in Tajikistan, they are deported back to Afghanistan and decide to take the dangerous smuggling route to the EU border to have their asylum claim heard. "Midnight Traveler" premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival where John Horn spoke with Emelie Mahdavian, who produced and edited the film. Director Hassan Fazili and his family are still awaiting a decision on their asylum claim in Germany, where they arrived in 2018. They were unable to travel to the Sundance because they do not have passports. (The film opens in select theaters on Oct. 4.)

Endeavor Goes Down A Notch

(Starts at :45)

Variety's Gene Maddaus talks with John Horn about his and Cynthia Littleton's story on a Hollywood powerhouse: "As Endeavor grew from a small startup to a worldwide entertainment conglomerate, it cultivated a reputation for limitless ambition and ruthless competition. So when the company withdrew its public offering on Thursday, mere hours before it was to begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange, it was more than a temporary setback. Endeavor not only lost out on several hundred million dollars in fresh capital — it also lost its air of brash invulnerability."

Get Yourself Some Jay Som

Indie rock/pop musician Melina Duterte, recording as Jay Som since 2015, has a new album. "Anak Ko" — meaning “my child” in Tagalog — is only her second studio album. The record was inspired by '80s bands such as The Cure and Cocteau Twins, and was written mostly during a trip to Joshua Tree. For more on her newest album, Melina speaks with KPCC producer Itxy Quintanilla about the process behind the melodies, lyrics and making of "Anak Ko."