“Desert Flower” follows the true Cinderella-like journey of Waris Dirie, who escaped Somalia at the age of 13 and spent her adolescence as a maid in her country’s London embassy. A regime change forces her onto the streets of London, but she is discovered by a famous fashion photographer, and this scared, homeless runaway evolves into a glamorous runway superstar.
Her beauty and courage open doors to an exciting career, but her life is even more transformed by her tenacity to fight against the poverty and cultural traditions that earlier had forced her to run away from her home and family. Her work resulted in her being named United Nations special ambassador for women's rights in Africa in 1997.
"Desert Flower" is based on the best-selling novel by Waris Dirie and Cathleen Miller and stars Liya Kebede, who has graced the covers of Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar and V magazines. The film was a 2009 Venice Film Festival selection and will open this March.