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A group of artistes from Iran have written a moving open letter to the artiste community of the world about the despairing COVID-19 pandemic in Iran, aggravated in the light of the U.S.-led Security Council sanctions. The signatories — 302 as of March 28 — include stalwarts of cinema such as Majid Majidi and Rakshan Banietemad, popular actor-filmmaker-writer Niki Karimi, actor Babak Karimi and Shahab Hosseini who won the best actor award at Cannes Film Festival in 2016 for Asghar Farhadi’s celebrated film, The Salesman. “The people of Iran are facing a crisis today; the Corona crisis you are aware…

Oh, God, it should have been over a half century since the last time that I met Manuchehr Shamsaei. Manuchehr was the lighting engineer in National Iranian Radio and Television, a brilliant  artist. Back then I was working as a film director at NIRT and also writing film critics for several publications. With Manucher we shared love for Italian cinema and at any opportunity we would talk for hours about films and I was always surprised by his rich knowledge of arts. Many times our favorite topic was lighting in Michelangelo Antonioni films, and I have to admit that I…

The 15th Panorama of Maghreb and Middle Eastern Cinemas, a Parisian international film festival, will review a lineup of the latest Iranian movies in a special section. Feature films “Dressage” by Puya Badkubeh, “Yalda, a Night for Forgiveness” by Masud Bakhshi, “Hendi and Hormoz” by Abbas Amini and “Esrafil” by Ida Panahandeh are among the films to go on screen in this section. Documentary films “Sonita”, a co-production from Iran, Germany and Switzerland by Iranian filmmaker Rokhsareh Qaem-Maqami and “Women According to Men” by Saeid Nuri will also be screened at the festival, which is scheduled to be held from…

Parasite, a South Korean black comedy thriller film directed by Bong Joon-ho won four Oscars tonight: Best Original Screenplay, Best International Film, Best Director and Best Film. This is the first time in history of the Academy Awards that an international films wins four Oscars. https://vimeo.com/390415260 Bong Joon-ho, director of Parasite, also co-wrote the screenplay with Han Jin-won. It stars Song Kang-ho, Lee Sun-kyun, Cho Yeo-jeong, Choi Woo-shik, and Park So-dam, and follows the members of a poor household who scheme to become employed by a wealthy family by infiltrating the household and posing as unrelated, highly qualified individuals. The film…

ShortsTV, the pioneering platform dedicated to short entertainment (www.shorts.tv), working with Magnolia Pictures, will open “THE 2020 OSCAR NOMINATED SHORT FILMS on more than 500 screens across the United States on January 31, 2020, marking the 15th year of the release. THE 2020 OSCARS NOMINATED SHORT FILMS that will showcase the Live Action, Animation and Documentary short-film nominees’ compilation. Today, January 29, ShortsTV™ had a special screening of  THE 2020 OSCAR NOMINATED SHORT FILMS at the IFC Center in New York City and in select markets, and then roll out across the US and Europe on January 31. https://vimeo.com/372889013 This…

Golden Glbes has announced the nominees for the Best Foreign Language Films: The Farewell, Les Misérables, Pain and Glory,  Parasite and Portrait of a Lady on Fire. International films also received nominations in other categorize: Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama: Antonio Banderas, Pain and Glory Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy: Awkwafina, The Farewell Best Director – Motion Picture: Bong Joon-ho, Parasite Best Screenplay – Motion Picture: Bong Joon-ho and Jin Won Han, Parasite https://youtu.be/kgJT_9IGqsA The Farewell USA – Directed by Lulu Wang Sad but not surprising, again a film made…

Omer Ben-Shachar‘s insightful film Tree #3 focuses on an immigrant child who takes drastic measures to be noticed in a school play. This film won the 2019 Student Academy Award, the Audience Award for Best Student Short Film at Palm Springs International ShortFest 2019 and it was nominated for Best Comedy at the Student Emmys/College Television Awards 2019. Tree #3 won the Jury Award for Best Student Short and The Audience Award for Best Opening Night Film at NFFTY. Here is the podcast of our interview with Omer Ben-Shachar, Director of Tree #3: https://soundcloud.com/user-222526075/tree-3?in=user-222526075/sets/cwb-podcast Writer-Director Omer Ben-Shachar was born and raised in…

American-Iranian actor Payman Maadi will be awarded the 2019 Stockholm Achievement Award for his unique quality of reaching through the screen, past prejudices and over borders. Maadi will accept the Bronze Horse at the Nordic premiere and red-carpet screening of his film Just 6.5 (2019) during the Stockholm International Film Festival.The film is competing for the prestigious Stockholm Impact Award. The festival said that this years’ achievement award went to Maadi for his ‘world-class role performances that have enriched great cinema.’ ‘With his powerful and insightful role interpretations, he opens a door for the audience to go beyond the big…

Shahab Hosseini, the star of Asghar Farhadi’s Oscar-winning movies “A Separation” and “The Salesman”, will lead the cast in Finnish-Iranian director Hamy Ramezan’s new project “Oasis of Now”, Screen Daily announced on Thursday. “Oasis of Now” follows a family seeking asylum in Finland, and won the best project award at the Finnish Film Affair, which ended on Thursday. Hosseini was named best actor for his role in “The Salesman” at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016. He is also scheduled to portray Shams-i Tabrizi, the wandering sage who later became the mentor of Rumi in the 13th century CE, in…

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