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France to Release Ali Reza Qorbani’s Album

Friday, December 12, 2014

Compiled By: Firouzeh Mirrazavi
Deputy Editor of Iran Review

*France to release Ali Reza Qorbani’s album

Eminent Iranian vocalist Ali Reza Qorbani’s new album, Lost in Love, is slated to be released in French capital of Paris.

Recorded by the French company, Accords Croisés, the album includes Iranian traditional songs.

The songs have been inspired from the works by the classical Persian poets Abu-Saeid Abul-Kheir and Mowlavi as well as the works by the contemporary poets Fereidoon Moshiri and Mohammad-Reza Shafiei Kadkani.

Lost in Love was composed by the Iranian musician Saman Samimi, who is also a Kamancheh – an Iranian bowed string instrument – maestro.

The album will hit the market with the French title of Éperdument on January 27.

Qorbani has performed concert tours in a number of countries like Germany, Belgium, Algeria, Greece, Turkey, Denmark and Ireland.

He also took part in the Sounds of Persia Festival in Toronto, Canada, and the annual Festival de Saintes in France.

Qorbani, along with a number of Iranian and Tunisian musicians, also had Persian and Arabic performances in Morocco and France. He was warmly welcomed by the audience, particularly traditional Persian music lovers.

He has studied under prominent Iranian musicians like Khosrow Soltani, Behrouz Abedini, Mehdi Fallah, Ahmad Ebrahimi, and Dariush Tala'i, whom he accompanied in numerous concerts.

*Iranian director, actress honored at APSA

Leading Iranian female filmmaker Rakhshan Bani-Etemad and Iranian actress Merila Zarei honored at the 8th Asia Pacific Screen Awards (APSA) festival held in Australia.

Leading Iranian female filmmaker Rakhshan Bani-Etemad has garnered award for her film The Tales at the 8th Asia Pacific Screen Award (APSA).

Bani-Etemad took one of the two jury grand prizes of the festival held in Australia.

Another jury grand prize went to producers Nai An, Li Ling, Kristina Larsen and Wang Yong for their collaboration in the Chinese film Blind Massage.

Tales is composed of seven short episodes, in which Bani-Etemad reveals the fate of some of the main characters in her previous films like The Blue-Veiled, Under the Skin of the City and Mainline.

Russian film “Leviathan” produced by Alexander Rodnyansky, Sergey Melkumov, and Marianna Sardarova was crowned best film and Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan won the best director award for his “Winter Sleep,” which previously won a Palme d’Or at Cannes.

Bani-Etemad received the Best Screenplay award for the film at the 2014 International Venice Film Festival in Italy.

Iranian actress Merila Zarei also won Best Actress Award of the 2014 APSA for her role in the acclaimed Iranian war drama Track 143 directed by woman filmmaker Narges Abyar.

The movie premiered at Iran’s 2014 Fajr International Film Festival and garnered rave reviews by critics and audience.

The 8th edition of APSA nominated Iranian cinematic productions for awards in five categories.

Iranian film I’m Not Angry, directed by Reza Dormishian, was also awarded the APSA Academy NETPAC Development Prize at the 2014 edition of the festival.

Melbourne, directed by Nima Javidi, was among the nominated films for the best screenplay award.

Award-winning Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi presided over the six-member jury panel of the 2014 APSA.

He is a three-time APSA winner including Best Screenplay and the Jury Grand Prize for About Elly in 2009, as well as Best Film for A Separation in 2011.

Some 36 screen productions from 21 countries of the region competed at different categories of this year’s festival.

The 2014 Asia Pacific Screen Awards ceremony was held in Brisbane’s historic City Hall on December 11.

*Iranian director's short film nominated for Oscar

A film by an Iranian director has been initially shortlisted for the best Live Action Short Film at the 87th Academy Awards.

Parvaneh, the 25-minute short film by Talkhon Hamzavi, is one of the 10 motion pictures selected from a 141 qualified short films in this Oscar Awards category.

Parvaneh narrates the story of an Afghan girl who has entered a refugee camp in Switzerland, but when she comes to know about her father’s poor health condition in Afghanistan, she decides to send the whole money she had illegally earned in the foreign land to her family. She is forced to go to the city of Zurich, but due to not possessing a valid passport, she finds herself unable to follow her initial aim. Meanwhile, she meets a girl named Emily, and the rest of the story is determined by their friendship.

Hamzavi, who is currently living in Switzerland, has produced her film in German language. She had formerly participated in various foreign film festivals with Parvaneh, and in 2013, won the silver medal for the best foreign film at Student Academy Awards. Her film was forwarded to the Oscars from the country of her residence. She was born in 1979 in Tehran, and migrated to Switzerland when she was 7. She obtained her Master of Arts in film-making from the University of Zurich.

All the 10 qualified short movies were viewed for the first round of voting by the Academy’s Short Films and Feature Animation Branch Reviewing Committee at Los Angeles screens. Based on the regulations, three to five movies will ultimately be opted as the major finalists at the upcoming Academy Awards. Four cities of Los Angeles, London, New York, and San Francisco will host the branch screenings in December.

Nominees in all 24 categories of the 87th Annual Academy Awards will be announced on January 15, 2015, in Samuel Goldwyn Theater, and the Oscars Ceremony will be held on February 22, 2015, at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood.

Iran has officially addressed Reza Mirkarimi’s Today to represent the country this year. A Few Cubic Meters of Love, the Iranian-Afghan film directed by Jamshid Mahmoudi, is also nominated by Afghanistan to compete at the upcoming Academy Awards.

*‘I’m Not Angry’ wins at Asia Pacific Screen Awards

Iranian movie I’m Not Angry has won a prestigious prize at the 8th edition of the Asia Pacific Screen Awards (APSA) festival held in Australia.

Directed by Reza Dormishian, the film was awarded the APSA Academy NETPAC Development Prize at the 2014 edition of the festival.

Dormishian along with the Australian producer Emile Sherman were announced winners of two major prizes of the event ahead of the 8th APSA ceremony on December 11.

Dormishian’s second feature film competed with Winter Sleep (Turkey, France, Germany), Leviathan (Russian Federation), The Owners (Kazakhstan), and Memories on Stone (Iraqi Kurdistan).

The film’s leading actor Navid Mohammadzadeh was also nominated for the best actor award of APSA.

"A stunning and heart-breaking love story, with convincing characters and settings, proving the talented filmmaker's ability to control all aspects of his film, the image, performances and even editing for a maximum effect," the NETPAC Jury said of the film.

I’m Not Angry narrates the story of a university student, Navid, who drops out due to his activities and beliefs.

The social drama nabbed the Asian New Talent Award for Best Film and the Best Director Award at the 17th edition of Shanghai International Film Festival.

Several other Iranian cinematic productions were nominated for awards in five categories at the 8th edition of APSA.

Melbourne, directed by Nima Javidi, is nominated for the best screenplay award.

Merila Zarei is a nominee for the best actress award for her role in Track 143.

Rakhshan Bani-Etemad is one of the nominees for the best director at this year's festival for the acclaimed drama The Tales.

Award-winning Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi has been selected to preside over the six-member jury panel of the 2014 APSA.

He is a three-time APSA winner including Best Screenplay and the Jury Grand Prize for About Elly in 2009, as well as Best Film for A Separation in 2011.

The 2014 Asia Pacific Screen Awards ceremony will be held in Brisbane's historic City Hall on December 11.

*Iran short film ‘Fish and I’ wins at US festival

ranian short cinematic production “The Fish and I,” directed by Babak Habibifar, has nabbed an award at the 2014 Short Short Story Film Festival in the United States.

The film received the Audience award of this year’s festival held on November 29.

Also written and edited by Habibifar, the short drama recounts the story of a blind man trying to save his fish.

The film has been screened at a number of international events and won several awards such as the award for the Most Original Film at Uhvati Film Festival in Serbia.

The Fish and I has recently garnered three awards at the16th edition of Soria International Film Festival in Spain.

“After 17 Hours” and “After 15 Years” are Habibifar’s other well-known short screen productions.

Presented by the Rhode Island International Film Festival, the annual Short Short Story Film Festival features the short screen productions from across the globe that depict stories under five minutes.

*‘Today’ scoops awards at Estonian film festival

Celebrated Iranian filmmaker Seyyed Reza Mirkarimi’s movie Today has nabbed two awards at the 18th Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival in Estonia.

The film has scooped both FIPRESCI Critics Award and Interfilm Church Prize of the festival.

Today contended for awards with 17 other movies in the international section of the event.

Prominent Iranian actor Parviz Parastouei and the actress Shabnam Moqaddami along with some other cast members star in the film written by Mirkarimi and Shadmehr Rastin,

Iran introduced Reza Mirkarimi’s Today as its contender at Foreign Language Film Award category of the 87th Academy Award.

The movie has been recently displayed at the Toronto International Film Festival in Canada.

Mirkarimi’s works have been screened in many international events and garnered awards in the Iranian and foreign festivals.

Mirkarimi's dramatic comedy A Cube of Sugar had been also selected as the Iranian entry for the Best Foreign Language Oscar at the 85th Academy Awards in 2013, but the film due to a sudden decision of Iran’s culture ministry was not submitted.

The Tales, I’m not Angry, A Few Cubic Meters of Love have been selected to represent Iranian cinema at

The 18th Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival took place on November 14-29.

*Iran animation bags award at Munich film festival

Iranian short animation Scale has scooped a prestigious award at the 2014 edition of Munich International Festival of Film Schools in Germany.

Directed by Amin Rahbar, the animation garnered the high-profile Climate Award of this year’s edition of the film event.

“Scale is a two-minute film which was produced by cutout animation technique,” the director said.

Some 42 screen productions from 22 countries, displaying various themes, took part in this festival.

Scale has been screened and awarded at several international festivals including Hamburg Festival in Germany, Con i minuti contati Festival in Italy, and SHNIT Festival in Switzerland.

The jury congratulated Amin Rahbar on the successful artistic and technical realization of his film, saying, “In just one and a half minutes, the clip illustrates how drastically our environment has changed, the severe damage that has been done to it and the current consequences such as climate change.”

The Munich International Festival of Film Schools is held annually on November 16-22.

*Ali Reza Qorbani bags Pakistan music award

Traditional Iranian vocalist Ali Reza Qorbani has been awarded at Pakistan’s International Mystic Music Sufi Festival 2014.

Qorbani won the festival’s Sufi prize for performing a program on Persian mystic and poet Mowlavi’s poems. The award was dedicated by the festival organizer Rafi Peer.

A number of Sufi music group and singers from Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, China, Russia and India also presented Sufi poetry and music at this year’s festival held at Alhamra Cultural Complex on December 6-8 in Lahore.

Qorbani has performed concert tours in a number of countries like Germany, Belgium, Algeria Greece, Turkey, Denmark and Ireland.

He also took part in the Sounds of Persia Festival in Toronto, Canada and the annual Festival de Saintes in France.

Qorbani, along with a number of Iranian and Tunisian musicians, also presented Persian and Arabic performances in Morocco and France. He was warmly welcomed by the audience particularly traditional Persian music lovers.

He has studied under prominent Iranian musicians like Khosrow Soltani, Behrouz Abedini, Mehdi Fallah, Ahmad Ebrahimi, and Dariush Tala'i whom he accompanied in numerous concerts.

*Russian film festival honors two Iranian figures

Celebrated female Iranian director Narges Abyar and actress Gelareh Abbasi have garnered awards at the First Russian Silver Horse Film Festival.

Abyar was awarded the Best Film prize for her first feature film “The Objects in the Mirror Are Closer than They Appear” and the film’s actress Gelareh Abbasi took the Best Actress award.

The film was presented at the event during two screening programs for different classes of audiences such as students, film critics, housewives and workers.

Abyar’s drama chronicles the life of a young pregnant woman and her husband.

The film was showcased at several international festivals, such as the 2013 Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) in China and the 30th Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival in 2014.

Iranian documentary “Mashti Ismail” by Mehdi Zamanpour Kiasari also competed at the Russian film event.

The festival hosts 10 narrative films as well as 14 documentaries from Russia, Germany, Azerbaijan Republic, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Cuba, Bulgaria, Iraq and Lithuania.

The First Russian Silver Horse Film Festival was held in Ufa, the Muslim center of Russia.

*Iranian film ’Fish and Cat' wins at Vietnamese film festival

Celebrated Iranian director Shahram Mokri’s horror movie Fish and Cat has won a top prize at the 3rd Hanoi International Film Festival in Vietnam.

The movie grabbed the best director award at the Vietnamese film festival held on November 23-27.

The five-day festival, themed "Cinema- Integration and Sustainable Development", brought together more than 150 delegates and 130 films from over 30 countries.

Mokri’s mesmerizing film was Iran’s only representative at the Vietnamese festival.

The 127-minute movie depicts the story of a group of university students who face different problems during their trip to the north of Iran.

Produced by Kanoon Iran Novin, Fish and Cat has participated in many international events so far.

Shot in one continuous sequence, the psychodrama secured two top awards at the 28th Fribourg International Film Festival held in Switzerland.

The film has received the FIPRESCI Jury (International Federation of the Cinematic Press) as well as the Youth Jury Award.

The movie also won the Special Orizzonti Award for Innovative Content at the 70th edition of the Venice International Film Festival.

Fish and Cat also received the award of Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) in the Iranian Film Festival Australia (IFFA).

Many critics believe that Mokri’s screen representation is an innovative and technically impressive film.

*Mahmud Dowlatabadi receives France’s Chevalier of Legion of Honor

Iranian author Mahmud Dowlatabadi, mostly famous for his novel “Kalidar”, received the Chevalier of the Legion of Honor during a ceremony held in Tehran.

The medal, which is the highest decoration awarded by the French government, was presented to the author by French Ambassador Bruno Foucher during a ceremony at his residence in Tehran.

The ambassador gave a brief speech about the life and works of Dowlatabadi. He also praised his artistic career in theater and storytelling.

Wearing the medal, Dowlatabadi talked about French literature and civilization in his short speech, and pointed to the issues of writing and the pains of writing.

A number of scholars and literati including Dariush Shayegan, Kambiz Dermabakhsh, Omid Rohani, Lili Golestan, Javad Mojabi and Hassan Kianian attended the ceremony.

Born in 1940, short-story writer and novelist Dowlatabadi was the most prominent Iranian novelist of the 1980s. Self-educated and forced to work from childhood, he spent part of his younger adult years as a stage actor in Tehran.

“The Colonel”, “Kalidar”, “Desert Strata”, “The Trip”, “The Legend of Baba Sobhan”, “The Cowherd”, “Aqil”, “Man” and “Missing Soluch” are among Dowlatabadi’s credits.

*Iranian Ceramist wins Best Architectural Award of Elite Tile

Iranian ceramist Abbas Akbari has won the Best Architectural Award of Elite Tile, the Fifth World Ceramic Tile Triennial held in Santo Domingo, the Dominican Republic.

Akbari won the award for his tile “Birth of a Star”, chosen from his collection “Jaam-e Jam”. The winners were announced at the Museum of Modern Art on November 14.

*Iranian child artist shines at Finnish art expo

Iranian child painter Hasti Moin has bagged the top award at the 15th International Art Exhibition for Children and Young People in Finland.

The 11-year-old girl, Moin, received the medal of the exhibition for her painting, which depicts a rural family harvesting wheat.

Moin’s artwork along with other 36 art pieces were nominated as medal winners during a ceremony held at the exhibition venue in Villa Arttu Cultural Center in Hyvinkaa city.

Mohaddeseh Khosravi, Sama Mokhtari and Fatemeh Karimian were other Iranian representatives who won diplomas at the exhibition.

The artists were required to focus on the theme of food with the motto of “Let’s Eat!”

The exhibition opened on October 29 and will run until December 14, 2014.

The exhibited works were selected from among 6,000 artworks submitted from 77 countries.

*Iranian film nabs award at Russian film festival

Iranian movie, Endless Road, directed by Abbas Rafei has been awarded at the 11th International Moscow Charity Festival "Shining Angel."

The film picked up the Special Jury Award of the event held in Moscow on November 1-8.

Endless Road relates the story of a young cleric whose fiancée is attacked when acid was thrown into her face.

Born in 1962, Rafei has directed and produced a number of cinematic productions, several of which have been screened at international events.

He also served as a juror at the 2013 South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) International Film Festival in Sri Lanka.

Ehsan Abdipour’s All Alone was another Iranian film which represented the country’s cinema at the "Shining Angel" film festival.

Some 144 films from 26 countries like Finland, Russia, Ukraine, Sweden and Belarus took part in this year’s festival in Russia.

*French Order of Academic Palms awarded to Lili Golestan

Iranian translator Lili Golestan, who is also the curator of Tehran’s Golestan Gallery, received France’s Order of Academic Palms during a ceremony at the Embassy of France in the Iranian capital.

French Ambassador Bruno Foucher delivered a short speech before honoring Golestan with the order, which is awarded by the French Minister of Education to those who have rendered eminent service to French education and have contributed actively to the prestige of French culture.

“In the animated and rich cultural atmosphere of Tehran, in which you can find no day without an event, Golestan Gallery has a special place,” Foucher stated.

He also praised Golestan for the efforts she made to introduce French writers, including Albert Camus, Jean Giraud and Romain Gary, to Persian readers.

“Your achievements show that you are among the very eminent women and France praises such persons. Indeed, such brilliant activities in the promotion of Iranian art and such a will for the introduction of French literature luminaries deserve appreciation,” he added.

Foucher then presented the order to Golestan and she also made a short speech.

“French literature is part of my soul,” she said and added that she has tried to introduce it to Persian readers.

“I have had a small gallery in this mega city for over a quarter of a century. This night’s meeting caused me to take a glance at the past and for the first time to ask myself exactly how many times I have organized exhibitions at this gallery. The result surprised me and I also felt more exhausted: 1040 exhibits. But, due the decoration I received tonight, I feel that it’s time to forget the 1040 exhibitions and also to shelve the forty books that I translated and the 340 articles that I wrote for newspapers and magazines, in order to ease my exhaustion for a while, only for a short while,” she stated.

Born in 1944, Golestan studied dress and textile design at the National School of Decorative Arts (École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs) in Paris.

She also attended classes on world art history and French literature at “La Sorbonne.”

She translated many books from the world literature into Persian, most of which have been republished several times. Among the works are Eugene Ionesco’s “Story Number 3”, Maurice Druon’s “Tistou of the Green Thumbs”, Miguel Angel Asturias’ “The Man that Had it All, All, All”, Gabriel Garcia Marquez’ “The Smell of the Guava Tree” and “Chronicle of a Death Foretold”.

Golestan made her professional debut as a translator in 1969 by her translation of the Italian journalist and author Oriana Fallaci’s Nothing, and So Be It.

France has honored a number of Iranian artists and scholars such as Abbas Kiarostami (filmmaker), Dariush Mehrjui (filmmaker), Leila Hatami (actress), and Pari Saberi (theater director) with France’s different high decorations.

‘Melbourne’ bags top award at Cairo film festival

The highly acclaimed Iranian family drama Melbourne has scooped the top prize at the 36th Cairo International Film Festival (CIFF) in Egypt.

Directed by Nima Javidi, the film received the Golden Pyramid for best film during the closing ceremony held at the Giza plateau on November 20.

Javidi’s debut feature film, Melbourne, chronicles the story of a young couple on their way to the eponymous Australian city to continue their education, but just a few hours before their departure, they become involved in a tragic event.

The movie recently garnered two awards at the 2014 Stockholm International Film Festival in Sweden.

Melbourne also received critical acclaim at the 71st Venice International Film Festival in Italy. The film had its international premiere at the festival.

“Some international critics who participated in the festival believe that Melbourne conjures up the mood and tone of the British film director Alfred Hitchcock’s works,” said Javidi.

The film has also been selected to compete at the 29th edition of Mar del Plata International Film Festival that is to kick off today, November 22, in Argentina.

Abed Abest’s screen production The Corner was another Iranian representative at this year’s Cairo film festival.

The 36th edition of Cairo International Film Festival took place on November 11-20.

*Iran filmmaker receives France high distinction

The celebrated Iranian filmmaker and cinema maestro, Dariush Mehrjui, has been awarded France's highest cultural distinction.

Mehrjui became France’s Chevalier of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres during a ceremony held at the French embassy in Tehran on Sunday. 

French Ambassador to Tehran Bruno Foucher awarded the medal to the Iranian auteur.

Born in 1939 in Tehran, the award-winning director graduated from the UCLA in philosophy and film studies in 1964.

To bring contemporary Persian literature to Western readers, Mehrjui released his own literary magazine in 1964, titled Pars Review.

He made his debut in 1966 with Diamond 33, a big budget parody of James Bond film series, though the film was not successful in terms of viewership.

Mehrjui not only established modern Iranian cinema, but he introduced realism, symbolism, and the sensibilities of art cinema.

The Iranian New Wave director, screenwriter, producer, and film editor, Mehrjui has won more than 50 national and international awards.

Golden Seashell Award in the 1993 San Sebastian International Film Festival and Silver Hugo Award at Chicago International Film Festival in 1998 are some of the prizes that were awarded to Mehrjui.

Boston's Museum of Fine Arts also honored the Iranian auteur with the first ILEX Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2008.

Mehrjui has produced and directed over 20 feature-length films such as The Cow, The Cycle, The Tenants, and The Pear Tree as well as several Persianized movies like Hamoun and Sara, which have been adopted from Western novels and plays.

France has honored a number of Iranian artists and scholars such as Abbas Kiarostami (filmmaker), Leila Hatami (actress), and Pari Saberi (theater director) with France’s highest decoration, the Order of Légion d’Honneur.

*“The Pearl” picked as best film at Minsk festival

The Iranian movie “The Pearl” won the Award for Best Film for Children at the 21st Minsk International Film Festival “Listapad”, the organizers announced.

Directed by Sirus Hassanpur, the film is about young siblings named Maher and Mahrokh who obliged to earn a living following the onset of heart disease afflicting their father Karim, a pearl diver.

The film competed with seven other films at the festival, which runs from November 7 to 14 in Belarus.

Alireza Osivand, Parivash Nazarieh, Salimeh Rangzan, Sirus Kahurinejad and Mehdi Faqih starred in the film.

The festival aims to consolidate cultural ties between the Republic of Belarus and other countries, as well as creative connections between the filmmakers of participating countries.

The film won the UNICEF award at the 26th Isfahan International Film Festival for Children and Young Adults in 2012.

According to the UNICEF report on the film, it “provides a realistic perspective of child labor and reflects situations where children are forced to distance themselves from their childhood.”

*Iranian cartoonist to receive National Order of Merit

Veteran Iranian cartoonist Kambiz Derambakhsh is slated to be honored with France’s most prestigious award, the National Order of Merit.

The celebrated Iranian artist will receive the award, dubbed in French Ordre National du Mérite, for his lifetime achievements in visual arts at the French Embassy in Tehran on Sunday.

Born in 1942, Derambakhsh is a leading cartoonist, graphic designer and illustrator, whose works are housed at many Iranian and international art centers and museums such as the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Arts, the Basel Museum of Caricatures, the Hiroshima Museum of Japan, the Anti-War Museum of Yugoslavia, the Istanbul Museum of Cartoons, and the Warsaw Museum of Caricatures.

His works of art were also showcased at the Modern Art Museum and the Nicolas Flamel Gallery in France as well as the Frankfurt Municipality Hall in Germany.

He has written and compiled a number of books, including Without Words, published in Iran, and Kambiz, published in Italy.

In 2013, the Michel Lafon Publishing in France released a selection of works created by Derambakhsh over the past 35 years in the form of a book.

Derambakhsh is known for his talent to find obscure themes for his creations and has received many awards at international competitions, including the grand prize of Japan’s Yomiuri Shimbun competition in 1998.

He was also awarded in international contests held in Switzerland, Turkey, Brazil, Germany, Yugoslavia and Italy, and honored during the closing ceremony of the 25th edition of the Aydın Doğan International Cartoon Competition in Istanbul in 2008.

France has honored a number of Iranian artists and scholars such as Abbas Kiarostami (filmmaker), Leila Hatami (actress), and Pari Saberi (theater director) with France’s highest decoration, the Order of Légion d’Honneur.

*Iranian children honored at Romania painting contest

Fifteen Iranian children have received awards at the 9th International Art Contest for Children, themed "Rainbow".

Iranian children presenting 857 paintings contended for awards at the Romanian international competition which hosted 3,294 works of art from 27 countries.

Among the Iranians that received awards are First Prize medal winners Sepideh Taheri (10 years old) and Meysam Abdollahi (12 years old), Second Prize medal winner Amir Hossein Valizadeh (12 years old) and Third Prize medal winner Benyamin Keramatinia (9 years old).

All the winners are members of Iran’s Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults.

The children participating were required to focus on ‘Loving the Earth’ as the theme of this year’s competition.

*Abbas Kiarostami to be honored with Austria art medal

Leading Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami has been selected to be honored with the Austrian Decoration for Science and Art.

Austrian President Heinz Fischer is slated to present the award to Iran’s acclaimed auteur Kiarostami.

The number of recipients of the Decoration for Science and Art is limited to a maximum of 72 at any one time including 36 recipients for science and 36 for arts.

In each of the two groups there are 18 Austrian citizens and 18 foreign nationals.

Kiarostami was recently honored with the Life Achievement Prize in Art at the 2014 International Antalya Golden Orange Film Festival in Turkey.

Born in 1940, Kiarostami has received highly positive reviews and acclaim from international critics for his diverse works of art such as painting, photography, poetry and filmmaking.

He has also garnered many prestigious awards, including the 1997 Cannes Golden Palm award and the 2008 Glory to the Filmmaker award of the Venice Film Festival.

The veteran filmmaker was also hailed by the Japanese government for his valuable works and activities in promoting Japanese culture in the world and developing cultural relations between two countries of Iran and Japan.

“One of the most admired contemporary auteurs of cinema, Abbas Kiarostami is an inspiration for emerging as well as established filmmakers. His approach to filmmaking, which often defies conventional techniques, is much discussed and often emulated," the head of Film Programming at Doha Film Institute Ludmila Cvikova had earlier commented.

Taste of Cherry, The Wind Will Carry Us, And Life goes On,Through the Olive Trees, Like Someone in Love  and Where is the Friend’s Home are some of his better known films.

*‘Borderless’ named winner at Tokyo film festival

Iranian screen production Borderless directed by Amir Hossein Asgari has bagged an award at the 27th Tokyo International Film Festival.

Asgari’s debut feature film competed with nine other movies from different countries and took the Best Asian Future Film Award.

The film had its world premiere at the Japanese film festival.

Borderless represents the story of a boy who always fishes from a grounded ship in the border zone. It is his place of seclusion and serenity to earn a livelihood as an fisherman, but his peace and quiet is disturbed by a stranger.

Asgari has made several short films which were screened in international film events. His second short film, Maybe another Time, won the Audience Award of 2012 edition of Shortini International Short film Festival in Italy.

Iranian director, Nima Javidi’s Melbourne was also screened in the international competition section of this year’s Tokyo festival.

Established in 2013, Asian Future Film is a fresh competition section for the first and second films made by upcoming directors in Asia.

The 27th Tokyo International Film Festival took place from October 23 to 31.

*Iran actress to be honored in Kolkata

Iranian actress and filmmaker Niki Karimi is to be honored at the 20th Kolkata International Film Festival (KIFF) in India.

The festival is planning to feature selected films by Karimi at the ‘New Horizon’ section.

She has also been selected to serve at the jury panel of this year’s Kolkata festival.

Karimi, who has appeared in more than 25 films and scooped numerous domestic and international awards, has judged at many international events, including the Cannes, Locarno, Damascus, Rennes, Delhi Osian, Reykjavik, Abu Dhabi, Vesoul and Berlin film festivals.

She recently judged at the jury panel of the 2014 edition of Pune International Film Festival (PIFF) in India.

She began her career with veteran Iranian filmmaker Behrouz Afkhami’s Bride and Dariush Mehrjui’s Sara, for which she received the Best Actress Award of San Sebastian and Nantes film festivals in 1992.

She made her first directorial debut with One Night in 2004 and her second film, A Few Days Later (2006), premiered at the Rome Film Festival.

Karimi’s latest film Final Whistle was warmly received at its Iranian premiere in August and has been screened in numerous international festivals so far.

The 20th Kolkata International Film Festival will last from November10 to17, 2014.

*Four Iranian cultural items enter UNESCO’s list

Four cultural items from Iran `have been inscribed in the regional section of the Memory of the World Program of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, Press TV reports.

Iran marked the registration of this cultural heritage during a ceremony held on October 27, the World Day of Audiovisual Heritage.

The inscribed items include Kitab al-masalik wa-al-mamalik (Book of Roads and Kingdoms) by Abu Ishaq Ibrahim ibn Muhammad al-Farisi that belongs to the 10th century and Vandidad, which is one of the chapters of Avesta, the sacred book of the followers of Zoroaster.

The other two items are Documents and Photos of Karbala, which is a collection of official government reports and documents dating back to 1191-1413 of lunar calendar and Jan-e Marjan, which is a documentary about the marine environment in the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman.

Some 301 items from 102 countries have been inscribed in Memory of the World Program and Iran has the most items inscribed in Asia region after China and Korea.

Iran has inscribed seven items so far that placed the country the 8th in the world and 3rd in the region.

Memory of the World Program is a part of UNESCO's projects that endeavors to promote public awareness, sustainable conservation, and universal access to documentary heritage of humanity.

The Memory of the World Register lists documentary heritage which has been recommended by the International Advisory Committee, and endorsed by the Director-General of UNESCO.

The committee selects from among the submitted works based on their world significance and outstanding universal value.

*Iranian drama named winner at German film festival

Iranian short production The Next Morning has garnered award at the 24th Black International Cinema Berlin in Germany.

Directed by Ali Hashemi, the film took the best expressionist narration award of the event.

The 24-mintue drama, The Next Morning narrates the story of a girl who wakes up to perform her daily routine, but a strange event has happened in her life as she finds that nobody recognizes her.

The film is Hashemi’s second short film after Wish and was screened at several international film events such as the 2014 Zanzibar International Film Festival in Tanzania.

The Black International Cinema Berlin focuses on presenting works of an artistic, cultural and political nature.

*Iranian book among IYL’s top works

‘The Coach’, a book written by Iranian writer Farideh Khalatbari, has been registered as one of the five top books on the list of International Youth Library (IYL).

“The IYL is the largest library for international childrens' and youth literature in the world. For the first time, since its establishment in 1949, the library has selected an Iranian book among its five top works,” Khalatbari said.

The IYL was established in 1949, four years after the Second World War with the efforts of Jella Lepman, a German humanitarian.

Each year the IYL, in Munich, Germany, selects newly published books from across the world that they consider to be especially noteworthy. This list of books is compiled into the annual White Ravens Catalogue, which is introduced each year at the Bologna (Italy) Children's Book Fair.

“Finally five top books are selected. This is the first time that a book from Iran has made its way to the top five works,” the writer noted.

The White Raven label is given to books that deserve worldwide attention because of their universal themes and/or their exceptional and often innovative artistic and literary style and design.

‘The Coach’’ is written by Iranian writer Farideh Khalatbari and illustrated by Zila Hodaei.

*Iran actor Peyman Moaadi shines in US movie

Award winning Iranian actor and filmmaker Peyman Moaadi has garnered rave reviews for his lead role in the US-produced film, Camp X-Ray.

Played in role of an English-speaking inmate named Amir Ali, “Moaadi jabbers and squirms and wheedles like a Middle Eastern cousin of Dustin Hoffman,” many critics say.

Directed by Peter Sattler, the flick sees Moaadi playing an eight-year-long Guantanamo Bay prisoner, who forges an uncanny friendship with a female guard at Guantanamo Bay detention camp, played by the star of Twilight film series, Kristen Stewart.

The friendship leads to the private’s questioning the nature of the notorious prison.

Born in 1971, Moaadi started his film career as a screenwriter in late 2000s. He is the writer of several famous Iranian movies.

He started his acting career in Asghar Farhadi's film About Elly (2009). Two years later, he received the Silver Bear award for Best Actor from the Berlin International Film Festival for his leading role in Farhadi’s Oscar winning movie A Separation.

Peyman Moaadi's directorial debut Snow on the Pines has been screened in many international film events.

The internationally-renowned actor and screenwriter Moaadi served at the jury panel of the 2014 Shanghai International Film Festival.

Sattler’s directorial debut, Camp X-Ray premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.
Moaadi has also appeared in the HBO television series Criminal Justice.

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