Iranian cineastes’ wins at 2019 global events acknowledged

TEHRAN, Sep. 14 (MNA) – The organizers of the Fajr International Film Festival held a ceremony on Friday at the Iranian Art Museum Garden to honor the Iranian cineastes who won awards or were selected for juries at international festivals in 2019.

The gala was scheduled to be held during the 38th edition of the festival, however, it was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Consequently, the organizers decided to hold the ceremony on Iran’s National Day of Cinema, which was celebrated on Friday this year.

Host Amir Esfandiari said, “Our great artists have been in the limelight at global events since long ago, and have attracted the world media’s attention to Iranian culture and its humane cinema, which is still moving ahead admirably.”

The first part of the celebration was dedicated to honoring those Iranian cineastes who were picked for juries by international festivals. Among them were the actresses Vishka Asayesh and Behnaz Jafari, and directors Puran Derakhshandeh and Majid Majidi. However, none of them could attend the ceremony due to prior commitments.

In this section, director Reza Mirkarimi was honored for his participation in the jury of the 16th Golden Apricot Yerevan International Film Festival in Armenia, and actress Fatemeh Motamed-Arya was praised for her collaboration as the president of the international jury of the 24th International Film Festival of Kerala in India.

The celebration went on with honoring Reza Jamali for winning the Spirit of Asia Award by the Japan Foundation Asia Center for his debut movie “Old Men Never Die” during the 32nd Tokyo International Film Festival.

Director Saeid Rustai and actor Navid Mohammadzadeh were also honored. Rustai had won the award for best director for “Just 6.5” and Mohammadzadeh had been crowned best actor for his role in the movie at the Tokyo festival.

Screenwriter Hamed Rajabi received a plaque of honor for winning the best screenplay award at the Rabat International Author Film Festival (FICAR) in Morocco for “Dressage” by director Puya Badkubeh.

Tehran-based Afghan brothers Jamshid and Navid Mahmudi were the next honorees for winning the Cultural Diversity Award under the Patronage of UNESCO at the 13th Asia Pacific Screen Awards in Brisbane, Australia.

Mahnaz Mohammadi was honored for her fiction-feature debut movie “Son-Mother”, which received the special jury award at the Alice nella Città section of the 14th Rome Film Fest.

Soha Niasati, the young star of Iranian director Rasul Sadr-Ameli’s drama, “My Second Year in College”, received a plaque of honor for taking the best actress award at the 41st Moscow International Film Festival for her role in the film.

“These honors help us step with more confidence on this new path,” Niasati said after accepting her award and added, “I was not able to attend the Russian festival, but now since I am here, I dedicate my award to my mother.”

Director Narges Abyar’s win at the 23rd Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival in Estonia was also acknowledged at the ceremony. Her drama “When the Moon Was Full” received the audience award at the festival.

Director Reza Mirkarimi and actor Hamed Behdad were also praised at the celebration for their triumphs at the 22nd Shanghai International Film Festival. Mirkarimi had been selected best director for his film “Castle of Dreams” and Behdad had won the award for best actor for his role in the movie.

Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Seyyed Abbas Salehi and Tehran Mayor Piruz Hanachi also attended the celebration. In his brief speech, Hanachi promised to build a special palace for the Fajr Film Festival.

By: Seyyed Mostafa Mousavi Sabet

First published in Tehran Times daily

News Code 163488

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