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                                        Volume. 12142

Drama on racism in France crowned best film at Iranian festival
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Sami Bouajila (L) and Nozha Khouadra in a scene from “Omar Killed Me” that was crowned the best film at the 30th Fajr International Film Festival.
Sami Bouajila (L) and Nozha Khouadra in a scene from “Omar Killed Me” that was crowned the best film at the 30th Fajr International Film Festival.
TEHRAN -- “Omar Killed Me”, a Moroccan real-life drama on racism and injustice in France, won the Crystal Simorgh for best film at the 30th Fajr International Film Festival.
 
French producer Rachid Bouchareb, who is of an Algerian descent, was absent at the closing ceremony of the International Section of the festival, which was held at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall evening Monday.
 
Directed by Roschdy Zem, the film was the Moroccan submission to the Best Foreign Language Film at the 84th Academy Awards and was selected as one of the nine shortlisted entries for the Oscars.
 
Best director award went to Marius Holst from Norway for “King of Devil’s Island”, a true story on a violent uprising in the early 20th century in the Bastoy Residential School, a reformatory for “maladjusted” boys.
 
Canadian actor Derek Tidd won a Crystal Simorgh for best acting for his role in “Black Noise”, a drama on the loneliness of old age that was directed by Iranian filmmaker Behruz Afkhami.
 
Tidd expressed his gratitude for the hospitality of Iranians in his acceptance speech and described his visit to Iran as amazing.
 
The Crystal Simorgh for best screenplay was given to Rachid Bouchareb, Zoé Galeron, and Olivier Lorelle for “London River”, on the coexistence of two Muslim and Christian families in London.
 
Oliver Stone’s son, Sean, one of the few renowned foreign guests attending the festival was invited on stage to present awards for winners in the Asian Cinema Section.
 
Best film award in this category was given to director/producer Dariush Mehrjui for “The Orange Dressed”, on a photojournalist who turns into a sanitation worker due to his enthusiasm for the environment.
 
The 72-year-old filmmakers said that he is happy seeing the festival and the Iranian cinema are still alive.
 
Japanese filmmaker Banmei Takahashi won the best director award for “Box: Hakamada Jiken”, on a notorious real-life crime.
 
The best screenplay award went to South Korean film “Romantic Heaven” by director/writer Jang Jin won the best screenplay.
 
Shirin Yazdanbakhsh won the best acting award for her role in “Kissing the Moon-Like Face”, a drama on dedication to family.
 
This year’s Golden Flag, an award given to films promoting faith and hope, was presented to the Iranian filmmaker Mehdi Sabbaghzadeh’s “Way to Heaven”, about the early history of Islam.
 
The Islamic Awakening Award, which was established this year to honor films on the Islamic awakening in the Middle East, was given to “A Rope Closer than Vein”, an Iranian-Lebanese joint production by Ali Zaher and Morteza Shamsi.
 
The 30th Fajr International Film Festival will continue with screening Iranian films until February 11.
 
MMS/YAW
END

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