2008 Films: Behzad’s Last Journey

Running Time: 57 minutes
Country: Ireland / Iran
Director: John Murray

This film follows Behzad, a charismatic Qashqa’i nomad on his spectacular annual journey across Iran. The Qashqa’i are a tribe of nomads who inhabit the mountains of South Western Iran, a proud people with a strong sense of identity and tradition. For centuries, the Qashqa’i have embarked each spring on a gruelling 500 kilometre migration. Resisting relentless pressure to give up their way of life, the Qashqa’i have maintained their own language, music, dance, dress and unique culture – but the nomadic journey is a dying form of human travel. With Behzad as our guide, the viewer can share in this great traditional journey.

John Murray


John Murray’s passion for adventure and exploration is apparent in every aspect of his career. With a degree in Marine Biology from Trinity College Dublin John began working as an “underwater journalist”, travelling the world, researching, writing, diving and photographing some of the most famous shipwrecks on earth. Back in Ireland his background in science and journalism found an outlet working as on on-screen reporter for RTE’s health series “Check Up”. Then in 1992 an Irish expedition to the Himalayas proved too strong a temptation for John to stay at home. Armed with a bolex and 1000 feet of film John joined the Irish team and filmed the first successful Irish ascent of a mountain over 8000 meters. His first film “Manaslu, Summit of Soul” was critically acclaimed and served as the impetus for John to establish his own production company, Crossing the Line Films. One year later saw the first Irish expedition to Everest… again John was there at the heart of the expedition filming the Irish team as they successfully reached the top of the world.

13 And a Half

Running Time: 60 minutes
Country: Canada / Iran
Directors: Nader Davoodi & Abbas Ahmadi

The story of “Thirteen” goes back to 100 years ago. Returning from a trip to France, the king has brought with him a new wife from there, for his harem, whose entrance is announced by him on the 13th day of the month. An incentive study of the present situation of Iranian women told through music and dance.

Nader Davoodi

Nader Davoodi is an award winning photojournalist. For the past decades, he has been working both on and off the record to produce ethnographically detailed works that document a very important period in contemporary history of our life. While his work can best be described as documentary, he aims to artistically capture important moments in everyday life rather than merely document. From 1991 to 1994, Nader lived in New York City, where his love for photography and the city itself produced an exceptional stock. He has captured some of the most precious moments of happiness and passion in his collection of the 12th Asian Games in Hiroshima 1994, Sydney Olympic games in 2000, as well as four World Cups, 1994, 1998, 2002, and 2006. Nader's love of moving pictures has been inevitable, and as an independent filmmaker, he has put his unique style to the celluloid.

Dead Heat Under the Shrubs

Running Time: 71 minutes
Country: Iran
Genre: Fiction
Cast: Leila Booshehri, Abolfazl Ghorbani, Asieh Kalani
Director: Esmael Barari

A high-octane thriller. One day, a teenage boy happens to witness a woman dumping a body down a well near his village on the outskirts of the desert. Noticing his presence, the murderess decides to get rid of him, starting a chase and deadly marathon.

Esmael Barari

Born in 1965 in the Caspian Sea port of Bandar Anzali, Esmael Barari graduated as film director. In 1988, his short film "Reaction" won the top prize at the Students film festival of Tehran and the Silver Plaque at the 1989 Nations festival of Austria. He is also the founder of World Iranian Film Center www.wifc.org.
Filmography: City in the Hands of Children, The Green Hell, The Devil’s Dance, The Nest, Dead Heat under the Shrubs.

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A World Between

Running Time: 55 minutes
Country: US / Iran
Director: Nezam Manouchehri
In Attendance: Nezam Manouchehri & Jason Rezaian

A World Between is the story of a young Iranian-American raised in the United States, who travels to Iran to discover his father's homeland. His encounters take him across the country, from the teeming capital of Tehran, to the center of Ancient Persia in Esfahan, and finally to the home of his ancestors in Iran's holiest city, Mashhad. In each place we meet his friends and relatives who help form a more representative view of Iranians rarely seen in the West.

Nezam Manouchehri

Nezam Manouchehri is a writer/translator photographer/filmmaker and actor (Deserted Station), born and brought up in Iran. Went to England and US for his higher education. Graduated from San Francisco Art Institute and made a number of short films. He also attended San Francisco State University where he was granted an MFA. He moved back to Iran after the war, where he is currently residing.

Hannibal Alkhas Colorful Poems

Running Time: 12 minutes
Country: Iran
Cast: Hannibal Alkhas
Poems: Poetry & voice of Forough Farrokhzad
Director: Mohammad Reza Sharifi

Hannibal Alkhas, Iranian master painter, and son of the Assyrian writer Rabi Adai Alkhas was born in Kermanshah, Iran, in 1930. His Uncle John Alkhas is one of the two most famous Assyrian poets in the 20th Century. Hannibal spent his childhood and teenage year in Kermonshah, Ahwaz and Tehran. In 1951, Hannibal moved to the United State in pursiot of his education and studied philosophy for three years at Loyola University of Chicago, Illinois. From 1953 to 1959 he attended the Art Institute of Chicago where be earned his Bachelor''s and Masters of Fine Arts. In 1959 , after the death of his father, Hannibal returned to Iran. He began teaching at the "Tehran Schoold of Fine Arts" for nearly four years. During that time he also established the successful Gilgamesh Gallery, the first modern Art Gallery in Iran where aspiring young artists were intrduced. In 1963, he returned to the US and taught art at Monticello Collage, in Illinois where he became the Chairman of the art department. In 1969 he went hack to Iran and taught at Tehran University for eleven years. In 1980, Hannibal was once again back in the US, and spent twelve years teaching arts at the Assyrian Civic Club of Turluck, private collages and the University of California at Berkeley and Los Angeles. He now teaches at "Azad University," a position which he has held since 1992. He also holds private painting classes and writes as an arts critic in various Iranian Magazines.

Mohammad Reza Sharifi

- Born in 1951 in Serkan (a city in west Iran). - High School in Hamedan.- High Education (BA): Persian literature from Tehran University (Faculty for Litrature and Human Science). - Graduated in the field of cinema and TV from Faculty of Dramatic Arts. - Cooperation in more than 90 short films as scriptwriter,photographer, director and producer. - Director of photography in more than 12 Iranian features like: Prosecutor, All the temptation of the earth, Journey of grey men. - Professor in field of photography and directing in University of Tehran and Dramatic Arts, Azad University. - His last works are: director of photography in the feature film "Such a long trip," director of a documentary film about the life and works of Abdullah Alimorad (A famous Iranian Animation Maker) this film is produced by the Institute for Mental Development of Children and Young Adults.

Lesson from Bam (Mashghé Bam)

Running Time: 23 minutes
Country: Iran/Austria
Cast: Azam Chardongi, Fatem Balaroodi, and the children of the Old Citadel School of Bam
Director: Alireza Ghanie

Forty days have elapsed since the earthquake in Bam- southeastern -Iran - an earthquake that killed over 68,000 people (unofficially) and destroyed the city and the ancient mud-brick citadel of Bam. The children of the Old Citadel School have finally gone back to school in the old citadel but as most buildings have been destroyed, class has been set up in the open air. The children have written compositions about their own experience of the earthquake and one by one are reading their composition out to the class.But the young girl, Fateme, does not want to read out her essay…

Alireza Ghanie
Writer, Director & Editor

Born in 1959 in Tehran, Alireza Ghanie moved to Austria when he was 14 years old. He received his masters degree in 1982 from the University of Music and Dramatic Art, "Mozarteum" in Salzburg. He graduated in Computer Science in 1994. He worked extensively in theatre and opera and also as a freelance painter. Ghanie made a number of short films and wrote several screenplays which allowed him to make his debut feature film WINDSPIEL / The Wind Game, (2002). Windspiel has participated in a number of international film festivals and was awarded by Omid Film Festival. He received the "Europa Tolerance" award, sponsored by the European Parliament, for his short film, HAND IN HAND in 1994. He lives and works as a freelance artist in Salzburg, Austria.

Abyaneh, Red Village

Running Time: 21 minutes
Country: Iran
Director: Katayoun Afrooz
[In Attendance]

Abyaneh is an ancient village in Iran, situated 40 kilometers from the Iranian Nuclear Power Plants in Natanz, on the northwestern slope of Karkas Mountain.

Being a village of great antiquity, the village has preserved in itself like a live museum, monuments from very far ages to this day. With a unique reddish hue, Abyaneh is one of the oldest villages in Iran.

The people of Abyaneh are in love with their traditions, their culture and their village. The village has 1500 years written history but the people of Abyaneh will tell you otherwise, they would say the village has been there for more than 6000 years.

Katayoun Afrooz
Director / Producer

Born and brought up in Iran, Katayoun Afrooz undertook her formal education and training in Cinema in the United State. She has been working as a professional filmmaker and artist. She holds a degree both in Cinema and TV production...
“Abyaneh, Red Village” is Katayoun’s first short documentary.
“Abyaneh, Red Village” premiered at the Los Angeles international shorts film festival. Katayoun’s next documentary short film "Bistoon & Its Secrets" was shot entirely in Iran. Katayoun is a U.S. citizen living in Los Angeles, CA.

Best in the West

Running Time: 70 minutes
Country: US

Director: Maryam Kashani

Leaving Iran for San Francisco in the 1960's, filmmaker's father and his friends maintained a friendship that would span over forty years, through cultural revolutions and political events that changed the world around them. By interweaving the history of oil relations between the US. and Iran, with the personal mishaps, achievements, and relationships of these men, the film explores the possibilities and limits of freedom, and the importance of friendship throughout this struggle.

Maryam Kashani

Maryam Kashani is currently a graduate student in Social Anthropology at the University of Texas, Austin, where she is examining issues of politics, identity and spirituality in the Middle Eastern Diaspora. She holds an MFA in Film/Video from the California Institute of the Arts. She began her filmmaking practice as an undergraduate at UC Berkeley. Her film and video work has been screened in festivals and museums internationally.

Women Behind the Camera

Running Time: 90 minutes
Country: US, France, Iran, Afghanistan, India, China...
Cast: Agnes Varda [France], Ellen Kuras, Celiana Cardenas, Emiko Omori, Mona Kasra, Rosette Ghaderi [Iran], Ariana Delawari, Shakiba Adil, Marie Ayub, Meenakshi Shedde, Ashok Mehta...
Director: Alexis Krasilovsky

This made-by-women-for-women documentary, based upon Alexis Krasilovsky’s book of the same name, connects globally, exploring the lives of camerawomen in Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Iran, Mexico, Russia, Senegal, and other countries in a way never seen before. From the secret films by camerawomen of Taliban beating Afghani women, to historic footage by China’s first camerawomen of Mao’s travels through the Chinese countryside… From the playful narrative of a Russian filmmaker who learned the art from her father, her choice of career told as a love story, to rural India, where subsistence-level women are taught camerawork as a means of empowerment, to the glowing young Senegalese camerawoman willing to climb onto a man’s shoulders – literally – to get her subject, Professor Krasilovsky shows us a world of beauty, courage and technical skill.

Rosette Ghaderi, one of Iran's first female Directors of Photography, studied cinematography at the University of Tehran. She says that there is no support for women cinematographers and DP's in Iran, but nevertheless, by demonstrating her skill, speed and talent, she was able to shoot her first film in Iraqi Kurdistan and has also directed a short film (as well as shooting it) called "Parhoodeh," set in the forests of Northern Iran.

Alexis Krasilovsky

Alexis Krasilovsky's "Women Behind the Camera" is based on her book, "Women Behind the Camera" (Praeger 1997), the first in-depth look at the lives of camerawomen and their struggles to succeed in a male-dominated field. After studying film history at Yale University, Alexis Krasilovsky embarked on a career as a n indpendent filmmaker and holographer. Krasilovsky was the first to include the film techniques of zooming and dissolving in a motion pictures hologram, "Created and Consumed by Light" (1975). Her pro-choice Hologram, "Childbirth Dream," was exhibited at the Georges Pompidou Center, Paris and other museums and festivals here and abroad. She later received an MFA in Film/Video from Cal Arts. As head of her own production company, Rafael Film (New York and Los Angeles), Krasilovsky has written, directed, produced and shot numerous documentaries, video-poems and art films, including "End of the Art World," "Beale Street," "Exile," "What Memphis Needs" and "Blood."Alexis is currently a professor in the Department of Cinema and Television Arts at California State University, Northridge, where she has taught film production, screenwriting and film studies. She and her son live in Los Angeles, where she continues to make her own movies.

The Wild Goose (Ghaze Vahshi)

Running Time: 51 minutes
Country: Iran
Genre: Fiction
Cast: Mamoud Naghibian, Afshin Bayanati, Mahboubeh Ghafari, Habib Javanmard
Director: Mahmoud Reza Sani

The story about the relationship between an Iranian and Iraqi soldier in a remote border at the threshold of the Iraq-America war. The main point in thise movie is the relation between the both soldiers with a migrating and wounded goose which has been wounded since it was shot by the Iraqi soldier in the middle of the mine field.

Mahmoud Reza Sani

Sani has made 15 short films, 2 television serial features. Has acted in several Iranian films and worked as assistant director. Formed his own company 5 years ago. Also has sea-faring background and worked as a sailor for a while before turning back to his true love, cinema. SIYAMO Awards:1) Cesare Zavattini Award for Best Documentary at 1st Gibara, Cuba Festival del Cine Pobre 2003) 'Best Documentary' Prize at Kansas State Jubilee Film Festival 2004, Kodak award - 1st Prize Cult Heritage“ Sofal Bahman Shir” Best Edit Shorts;Audience Award-"Trench”; Best Choice“Young Cinema Society" "FRAME" Screenplay published; Best Actor, education fests Judge at Iran-Abadan Social Film Festival, for short films (1999). The Wild Goose script was written by Behzad Vaziri.

Wind, Ten Years Old (Bud, Dah Saleh)

Running Time: 23 minutes
Country: Iran
Cast: Shaaf Noori, Parisa kani, Mehdi Moghadam, Marzieh Vafamehr
Director: Marzie Vafamehr
In Attendance: Shahrnush Parsipur

One day in a life of a ten-year old girl during the Iran/Iraq war. War propaganda nurtures her for fighting. Little by little she gets attracted to fighting and wishes being killed in the war. This film criticizes Iranian children environment specially educational system.

Shahrnush Parsipur

Born and raised in Tehran, she received her B.A. in sociology from Tehran University in 1973 and studied Chinese language and civilization at the Sorbonne from 1976 to 1980. Her first book was Tupak-e Qermez (The Little Red Ball - 1969), a story for young people. Her second novel was Tuba va ma'na-ye Shab (Tuba and the Meaning of Night - 1989), which Parsipur wrote after spending four years in prison. In 1990, she published a short novel, again consisting of connected stories, called Zanan Bedun-e Mardan (Women without Men), which Parsipur had finished in the late 1970s. The Iranian government banned Women without Men in the mid-1990s and put pressure on the author to desist from such writing. Early in 1990, Parsipur finished her fourth novel, a 1,000-page story of a female Don Quixote called Aql-e abi'rang (Blue-colored Reason), which remained unavailable as of early 1992.
Shahrnush Parsipur has since left Iran and currently resides in the United States. She is the recipient of the first International Writers Project Fellowship from the Program in Creative Writing and the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University.

Marzie Vafamehr

Marzieh Vafamehr, Graduated from Fine Arts Faculty in Tehran University in Acting. Participating in acting and scenario writing classes of Bahram Baizai in Hamid Samandarian`s school Establishing Arnavaz fashion products and gave it up in 1993 Founder of theatre group in Andishe cultural centre and supervisor of cinema theatre group of Andishe Javan group in 1997. Responsible of sale in the Photo exhibition of Nasser Taghvaee in 1996 Participating in precious and semi-precious stone exhibition in 2002 and 2003 in Arasbaran cultural center and private galleries Teaching dramatic creativity and theater acting in Mokaab and Chahar-Sou-e-honar workshops in 2001 - 2002 Worked as director assistant in Common Pain (Yasamin Malek Nasr), Behind the Curtain of Takhte Tavoos serial (Mohamma Rahmanian), Navaiee video clip (Ramin Heidari Faroughi), T.V hygienic training (Varouj Karim Masihi) ordered by public Health Organization, Greek Ship, Unrolled Paper and The Last Rehearsal (Naser Taghvaiee).

Acting in Gladiators play written by Alireza Hanifi (Winner of woman acting prize in The Student Theater Festival), Galileo Galilei written by Bertolt Brecht, The Rose Tattoo written by Tennessee Williams, Uncle Wiggily in Connecticutt written by J.D. Salinger, Hello and Good Bye written by Athol Fugard, Bahram e Choobineh written by Siamak Taghipour, Play House written by Hossein Kiani (Winner of woman acting prize in The Student Theater Festival), Unsweetened Tea a feature directed by Naser Taghvaiee whose shooting was stopped, Barefoot in Paradise a feature directed by Bahram Tavakolli, Chapter 7 a short film directed by Marjan Ashrafizadeh (Winner of best acting prize of Cinema Academy in Art Students Film Festival), After Lunch We will Sit & Talk a short film directed by Ramin Parvin.

On the Road with Kiarostami

Running Time: 30 minutes
Country: UK
Director: Mark Cousins
Producer: John Archer

Abbas Kiarostami is the most acclaimed Iranian film director whose films have won prizes all around the world. In this film he gives a rare and frank interview about his work, and journeys out of Tehran to meet Babak Ahmadpoor the now grown up star of his famous trilogy, which started with WHERE IS THE FRIENDS HOUSE. On the journey Kiarostami picks up the camera himself , producing images of pure poetry.

John Archer

John Archer is a creative leader with considerable experience in film and television production, setting up successful new ventures and spotting and developing new talent. He was head of Music and Arts at BBC Scotland and the founding Chief Executive of Scottish Screen. He has produced and executive produced over 500 hours of network television, from Billy Connolly's World Tours of Scotland and Australia which reached audiences of over nine million in the UK and sold widely around the world, to the major international documentary series The Director's Place. Since joining Hopscotch Films he's produced Writing Scotland and Detox or Die.

Cinema Iran

Running Tine: 50 Minutes
Couintry: UK
Genre: Documentary
Cast: Abbas Kiarostami, Darius Mehrjoui, Ezatollah Entezami, Mohsen Makhmalbaf, Mania Akbari, Jafar Panahi, Samira Makhmalbaf, Abolfazl Jalili, Omid Djalili...

Director: Mark Cousins
Producer: John Archer

For more than two decades Iranian filmmakers have been acclaimed around the world. Here the country's landmark directors explain why, many of them speaking on camera for the first time. Filmed on three continents, Cinema Iran tells the remarkable David and Goliath story of a small national film industry which went against the trends in Western Cinema and changed movie-making forever.

Mark Cousins

Mark Cousins is an Irish filmmaker and writer, living in Scotland. His documentary subjects include neo-Nazism, the Cinema of Iran, the first gulf war and the Irish crooner Daniel O'Donnell. His last book, The Story of Film, was published around the world. His next book, Watching Real People Elsewhere, is published in the UK and China in autumn 2008. He has curated numerous international film festivals. He is honorary Doctor of Letters at the Univiersity of Edinburgh, Scotland, and is currently making The Story of Film as a documentary series with his producer John Archer.

American Fugitive: The Truth About Hassan

Running Time: 75 minutes
Country: Canada/Iran/USA
Genre: Documentary
Cast: David Theodore, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George Bush Sr., Gary Sick
Director: Jean-Daniel Lafond

Revealed to the world in the 2001 movie 'Kandahar', directed by Mohsen Makhmalbaf, David Theodore Belfield is wanted in the U.S. for the 1980 killing of an Iranian diplomat, and now lives in exile in Iran. The story of an unrepentant assassin and an articulate accuser, 'American Fugitive' is the story of Hassan, a Black American who, in 1980, in Washington, acting on a fatwa, assassinated the Shah’s representative to the United States, Ali Akbar Tabatabai. Since then, he has been wanted by the FBI and has lived in exile in Iran.

Jean-Daniel Lafond

Born in France , Jean-Daniel Lafond is a former philosophy professor, a documentary filmmaker and a writer. He has written and directed over a dozen films that embody his commitment to creative documentary filmmaking: Dream Tracks (Les traces du rêve) (1986), Le Voyage au bout de la route (1987), Le Visiteur d’un soir (1989), La Manière Nègre ou Aimé Césaire, chemin faisant (1991), Tropic North (Tropique Nord), Freedom Outraged (La Liberté en colère) (1994), Haiti in All Our Dreams (Haïti dans tous nos rêves) (1995), Last Call for Cuba (L’Heure de Cuba) (1999), The Barbarian Files (Le Temps des barbares) (1999), Salam Iran, A Persian Letter (Salam Iran, une lettre persane) (2001), Le Faiseur de théâtre (2002), The Cabinet of Dr. Ferron (Le Cabinet du Docteur Ferron) (2003), American Fugitive: The Truth about Hassan (2006). A seasoned observer of the world and of our times, Jean-Daniel Lafond has crafted films that tell touching, though-provoking stories; philosophical poems that resonate with the call of the road, and mirror the fates of men and nations. Parallel to his involvement in cinema, he has developed an original body of work for radio and has also published several books. He is married to the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean, Governor General of Canada , and is actively involved in the activities of the office.


TV5 award for best French-language documentary, Namur 1994 Award for Best Political Film, Hot Docs Festival, Toronto 1996 Prix Gémeau for Best Documentary, 2002 Prix Gémeau for Best Cultural Documentary, 2004 Numerous nominations, including: Genie Award for Best Documentary in 1987 and Gemini Award for Best Documentary in 2000.

Exile Family Movie

Running Time: 94 minutes
Country: Austria / Iran
Director: Arash Riahi

A family’s story, typically crazy and exceptional at the same time. A film about home and exile, parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters and all the other relatives, close and distant, in an extended Persian family. Some of them emigrated to Europe or America, though the majority has stayed in Iran. Regardless of all the danger involved, they secretly meet after 20 years at a place which won’t raise suspicion among the Iranian authorities: Mecca. They come from America, Sweden, Austria and Iran to laugh, argue, cook and celebrate. This is accompanied by an excessive amount of hugging and kissing, and also a clash between Muslim and Western cultures.

Arash Riahi

Born 1972 in Iran, lives in Vienna/Austria since 1982. Studied Film and the Arts, has been working for the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation, the ORF, since 1995 on a freelance basis. Writer and director for the ORF youth and art departments. Founded the film and media production company "Golden Girls Filmproduction" in 1998. Has written, directed and edited several award-winning short documentaries, shorts, experimental films, music videos and commercials. The cinema documentary "The Souvenirs of Mr. X" in cooperation with ARTE and ORF was his first long documentary. Multi award winning “Exile Family Movie” is the second one. He just finished his first feature film “For a Moment, Freedom” at the end of 2007.

Iran: Behind the Walls

Running Time: 45 minutes
Country: Turkey / Iran
Genre: Documentary
Cast: Fatma Mutemedarya, Pouran Derakhshandeh, Münire Ravanipur, Azem Talegani, Fatemeh Ashrafi, Mahla Zamani, Rafat Bayat, Suheyla Culodarzade, Nefiseh Hajhosemi, Haideh Zarrinbal, Firouzeh Mohamad Tamani, Lily Wanshidiad, Ferzaneh Hemeti
Director: Hakan Tokyay

In Iran women are the key to the transformation of the country. Women played an influential role in the downfall of the Shah in 1979 and the rise to power of Muhammad Khatemi. After Khatemi became president, discussions in the media started an ongoing debate on dress code, the chador, punishments for criminals such as diyet and rajm, polygamy, the muta (short-term) marriage, women’s abilities to become judges, women’s right to divorce, their visability in the cinema, television and the media. Women claimed that the culture of patriarchy rather than religion kept women under pressure.

Where do Iranian women stand vis a vis religious authorities and pro-freedom intellectuals?

Hakan Tokyay

Enes Hakan Tokyay is a director from Stuttgart. As a graduate student in Audiovisual Media University Stuttgart (HdM) he made several short films and the second season of the film documentary series " Women in Islamic Countries" shown at the International Film Festival Sao Paulo and on Turkish television. Zwei dieser Filme (zu Algerien und Pakistan) wurden für die Reihe "Islam im Film" des 28. Two of these films (on Algeria and Pakistan) were for the series "Islam in the film" of 28 Filmfestivals Max-Ophüls-Preis im Januar 2007 ausgewählt. Film festivals Max Ophüls Prize in January 2007.

The Shade (Sayeh)

Running Time: 11 minutes
Country: Iran/Canada
Genre: Drama
Cast: Aryan Atri, Camyar Chai, Joleh Chaichian, Shaghayegh Mohammadali
Director: Mohammad Gorjestani
[In Attendance]

In a village in central Iran on a hot summer day a young boy sells balloons in hopes of buying ice cream. His struggle is paralleled with a city man, whose car blows a tire, causing him to search for a way back home. The two stories, though independent to themselves, are united by an umbrella, which shades each character's journey.

Mohammad Gorjestani

Mohammad Gorjestani was born in Tehran, Iran. During the Iran/Iraq War he moved to San Jose, California with his family where they have since resided. At a young age, Mohammad showed interest in drawing and painting, which transcended into a love of photography by the age of 18. College proved to be a serious crossroad in his life, when he realized it was time to focus his attention on a particular field. Mohammad chose the path of film, because he felt that cinema was a powerful tool of influence and expression. After working on his own short projects for a few years, Mohammad enrolled at the Vancouver Film School in fall 2006. While at the school, Mohammad ranked highest in cinematography class and took on the role of Director of Photography on three of the class films. He additionally directed one of the three Super 16mm final projects from his class in “The Shade”.

Zero Degree (Darjeh Sefr)

Running Time: 8 minutes
Country: Iran
Genre: Animation
Director: Omid Khoshnazar

Because of his villain act, a soldier is captured in the camera cadre. He kills a man, and the camera wants to take revenge, but…

Omid Khoshnazar

-Born 1981, Isfahan, Iran
-Graduated from IRIB (Iran TV Faculty as Animation Director).
-Member of AFIFA.
-Member of the Iranian Young Cinema Society.
-Manager of "Animation House" of IRIB faculty.
-Animator at the International News Channel.


1) White Magpie 2)
This Violent Group 3) Zero Degree

Faces on the Wall (Les Murs ont des Visages)

Running Time: 62 minutes
Country: Iran/France
Genre: Documentary
Directors: Bijan Anquetil & Paul Costes

All three Dastvaré children were killed during the Iran-Iraq War. The Islamic Republic of Iran had a mural painted in their memory. A fresco which, among hundreds of others in Tehran, represents these young soldiers who sacrificed their lives, in the name of God, for their country, dying as "martyrs of Islam". Today, in their neighbourhood, the legend of the "Dastvaré martyrs" still circulates, a complex mix of popular religion, State propaganda and personal memories. The Faces on the Wall questions the disillusion that surrounds an ideology based on the martyr’s figure, the founding myth of the Iranian new regime.

Bijan Anquetil & Paul Costes

Bijan Anquetil was born in Paris from a French father and an Iranian mother. After studies of philosphy and visual anthroplogy, he is working as a journalist and film maker.


-Iran, waiting for tomorrow (2004). A documentary about the youth inIran and their political invovlment.
-The faces on the wall (co-director Paul Costes).

Paul Costes was born in 1977 in France. After a childhood in Morocco, he arrived in Paris at the age of 20 where he studied Theatre, Cinema and Persian. At that time he met some actors from the french theatre company « D’ores et déjà » they hve been working togeteher on several theatre projects ever since. Paul met Bijan Anquetil in French oriental languages university «Langues ‘O» in 2003 and started working together on «The faces on the Wall». After this first common documentary poject, Paul and Bijan are now working on a second documentary project portrait of a Iranan actress.

Stand Up: Muslim American Comics Come of Age

Running Time: 56 minutes
Country: USA
Director: Glenn Baker

In Attendance: Tissa Hami

Stand Up: Muslim American Comics Come of Age is the story of Ahmed Ahmed, Maysoon Zayid, Dean Obeidallah, Azhar Usman, and Iranian comic, Tissa Hami [photo]. Muslims - and Americans all, and how each is responding to 9/11 in a different way. These comics face challenges from both mainstream America and within the Muslim community. All are at critical points in their careers, each evolving differently as a comic. But they are all striving for one thing: to break through the typecasting and achieve mainstream comedy success. Because above all, STAND UP is an American story. Which means anything is fair game for a laugh.

Tissa Hami
Iranian Comic

Tissa Hami is one of the world's few female Muslim stand-up comics. Her unique act and fresh perspective on life as an Iranian-American woman leave audiences in shock and awe. From Islamic fundamentalists to white liberals to good old-fashioned racists, no one is safe from her sharp wit. Tissa hopes her comedy will help break down stereotypes about Muslim women and foster understanding between Iranians and Americans.
Tissa grew up in a traditional Iranian family in a predominantly white suburb of Boston. She holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees in international affairs from Ivy League universities. Her parents are thrilled that she is using her expensive education to pursue a career in comedy.

Glenn Baker

Glenn Baker is a writer-producer with more than 40 documentaries broadcast on PBS exploring global security issues. Most recently he was Senior Producer for Foreign Exchange with Fareed Zakaria, a weekly international affairs program on PBS co-produced by Azimuth Media and Oregon Public Broadcasting. He was Executive Producer for Azimuth Media for the FRONTLINE program "Missile Wars," and wrote and produced "Arming the Heavens," a documentary on the weaponization of space. His film "Our Strange Love Affair with the Bomb" explored the lighter side of nuclear weapons. His productions on the military and the media, arms marketing, Cuba, conflict prevention, and firearms violence have been recognized with more than a dozen national awards. Baker grew up in Asia and the Middle East in a foreign service family, and lived in Muslim cultures for seven years (Turkey, Pakistan, and Tunisia). He is the president of Potomac Media Works Inc.