Ash Valley (Feature, WIP)

Written by G Wilson, Shu Zhu

Director: Shu Zhu

Producer: Sultan Pirzhan


Deep within the heart of an industrial “utopia,” lies the township of Ash Valley – a boiling cauldron of diverse cultures in Eurasia. Fueled by the extraction and export of oil, the citizens of Ash Valley toil away, working tirelessly in the industry that drives the State’s revenue. But inside this bustling hub of economic activity, a sinister truth lurks. A powerful elite few hold the reins of control, hoarding the wealth generated by the intricate network of pipelines and refineries that keep the oil flowing.

But now, with the State’s oil reserves slowly depleting, the once prosperous land finds itself on the brink of disaster. Widespread job loss and economic instability loom. The fate of Ash Valley rests on one hope – the discovery of oil that lies hidden deep underground. Driven by this desperate need, the citizens of Ash Valley and the Propaganda Bureau wage a frenzied search for this elusive resource, determined to restore the State to its former glory.

Shu Zhu

Shu is a graduate from American Film Institute’s MFA Directing Program and holds a BFA from New York University in Film and TV Production. With a special interest on rebellious expressions regarding social and cultural norms and identity, Shu has created works that have been showcased at prestigious festivals and institutions around the world, such as Telluride Film Festival, Chinese Young Generation Film Forum, National Museum of Art in Mexico, National Film Archive of India, Jia Zhangke Art Center, among others. Shu’s interest in intersection of art and technology leads him to the forefront of 3D animation and new media, having served as a creative director developing a cyberpunk animation series for Shanghai Moge Technologies, a premium Chinese animation company.

Previous Work
Ash Valley: Janyl – 2023, 17 min, fiction, director/writer

In Post-Production

Border – 2019, 3 min, fiction, director/writer.

Official Selection of Telluride Film Festival

Moth – 2018, 17 min, fiction, director/writer.

Grand Jury Prize at Chinese Young Generation Film Forum
Best Director and Best Actress at Chongqing Youth Film Festival Official Selection of LA Shorts International Film Festival
Official Selection of Las Vegas International Film Festival
Official Selection of Anonimul International Independent Film Festival Official Selection of Albuquerque Film and Music Experience Presentation at Jia Zhangke Art Center

The Creep – 2016, 4 min, fiction, director/writer

Official Selection of Nightmares Film Festival
Official Selection of Los Angeles Independent Film Festival
Official Selection of Columbus International Film and Video Festival Official Selection of Erie International Film Festival

The Man Who Fell from the Sky – 2016, 18 min, fiction, director/writer

Official Selection of China Independent Film Festival
Toured around 15 cities in China as a part of Qi Fang Screening Series

Sultan Pirzhan // WhatsApp: +1 714 873 32 10 // email: