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The 19th Fajr International Film Festival

Dialogue on Screen

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Another anniversary of the victory of the Islamic Revolution meant the next round of all international sports and cultural events held in Iran to celebrate the occasion. As Iranian movies introduced a genuine form of artfilm to the world in 1990s, Iran’s annual international film festival (Fajr) had to meet international expectations. This year, the 19th Fajr International Film Festival hosted 19 movies from 14 countries in the international section as well as 20 films in the national section. At the same time, a special section was dedicated to the screening and review of the works of Robert De Niro, the Hollywood icon.
An outstanding part of the closing ceremony was when the Award of Awards was presented to Dr. Seyed Ataollah Mohajerani, the former minister of culture and Islamic guidnace who, till last year, used to present Fajr awards himself.

Close to the Public Vote (Statements of Seyfollah Daad, Deputy Minister of Culture for Cinema)

Majid Majidi’s Rain and Bahram Beyzaie’s Killing Dogs were the favorites of Fajr International Film Festival

Fajr Film Festival could have included more movies. However, this was not possible due to our limited screening possibilities. Boards of judges in both international and national sections shouldered great responsibilities. The 19th Fajr International Film Festival is exceptional since for the first time, the audience will have a vote to choose the best movie in both national and international sections.
Drawing on the viewpoints of President Khatami’s administration, Fajr Film Festival has tried to select its board of judges from among those filmmakers and artists who have a greater public mandate. Their vote therefore is authentic and impartial, based on their expert views.

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By holding an international film festival on a regular basis, Iran is in fact developing the concept of “Cinema and Dialogue among Civilizations”

In a section called “Cinema and Dialogue among Civilizations”, useful seminars were held with the participation of scholars and in this respect we have put a particular proposal before UNESCO to dedicate a movie theater in each member country for screening movies made by other countries. This proposal has been welcomed by UNESCO Secretary General. It is in fact a suggestion for dialogue among civilizations in the movie business.

And the Winner Is

Majid Majidi is becoming another well-known director of Iran for his brilliant movies coming out one by one. His masterpieces like Father, the Color of Heaven and Children of Heaven have made him famous in Europe and at the Academy Awards. This year, Majidi’s latest release “Rain” had 13 nominations and swept 7 of them. And of course, Majidi himself won the Best Director award.
The next shining movie was Killing Dogs directed by the veteran Bahram Beyzaie.
The movie took home 5 awards out of its 12 nominations. Meanwhile, critics referred to Unfinished Piece by Mazyar Miri as an admiring work. Here is a list of major winners in different categories:

Best Director: Majid Majidi (Rain)
Best Production: Majid Majidi / Foad Nahas (Rain)
Best Actor: Hussein Abedini (Rain)
Best Actress: Soraya Qasemi (Rain)
Best Supporting Actor: Dariush Arjomand (Killing Dogs)
Best Supporting Actress: Mahaya Petrossian (Seven Acts)
Best Original Score: Ahmad Pejman (Rain)
Best Script: Bahram Beyzaie (Killing Dogs)
The Board of Judges’ Special Award: Manoochehr Mohammadi (Under the Moonlight)
The Audience’s Special Award: Bahram Beyzaie (Killing Dogs)

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