“We live in a diverse world, and to make it a better place to live in, we need to make diversity our strength -- not a divisive factor. We should be considerate to include every diverse perspective of all genders, ethnicities, cultures, and so forth, and give them an equal opportunity to voice their opinions and thoughts.”
“Many people I’ve met in my life have told me they had a negative image of Iran, but many also told me that through my work, I’ve helped them change it - Iranians will always put others first”
It is no secret that censorship is a reality consuming the Iranian artistic and cultural landscapes. And while some filmmakers flee the country to work and explore risky themes, it is home that draws the so-called censorship perpetrators back to Iran every single time.
The imaginative foundation of animation of a film medium strips away existing borders and penetrates cultural barriers, granting limitless control over an artistic vision. The magic of creating new and unseen universes takes away any preconceptions or restriction to free storytelling.
Making a profound and precious work of art in a foreign land can be an exciting odyssey only if the connections with one’s roots are filled with life. It is only then, that great artists can travel the world, observe and understand the other ways of life, and tell the stories of other lands and horizons in ways that will stay with us forever.
Since its founding, Berlinale has never shied away from artistically pioneering and defiantly daring films. In addition to programming films and involving filmmakers from the Farsi-speaking region in their side events, the festival has become a hot-bed for premiering Iranian-European co productions and films from Farsi filmmakers born and raised outside the Farsi-speaking region.
The 36th Sundance Film Festival concluded this week with major wins for Farsi-related cinema. The standouts this year included Yalda, A Night For Forgiveness, Exam, and Daughter—each of which won awards in major categories. Read on to witness Farsi cinema’s journey thus far at the world’s biggest indie film festival.
Last week, FCC took a look through big moments in the history of the Oscars for the Iranian film industry. This week, we switch our focus to the gems of Afghan filmmakers, whose work and lives are challenging the very conceptions the rest of the world holds against them.
While none of the Oscars nominees this year were from Iran or Afghanistan, these two Farsi-speaking countries have brought a wellspring of diverse talent and exciting films to the academy over the past three decades. Through a two part series on both Iranian and Afghan cinematic treasures, FCC takes a look back on past winners and contenders from the Farsi region at the Oscars.