January 28, 2023

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Berlin Film Festival bans companies, media outlets with ties to Iran

TEHRAN – Film companies, delegations and journalists working for media outlets with direct ties to the Iranian government will not be allowed to attend the 73rd Berlin International Film Festival – Berlinale.

In a statement published on Thursday, the organizers said that the decision has been made in support of the unrest that has struck Iran over the past four months.

The decision has been viewed by Iran as a politically-motivated move and an attempt at meddling in Iran’s internal affairs.

Based on the statement, the festival will not accredit organizations such as the Farabi Cinema Foundation and Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting, and centers with ties to the Islamic Ideology Dissemination Organization.

The festival imposed a ban on Russian-backed companies and media outlets last year following the country’s invasion of Ukraine. The policy was also implemented by the Cannes and Venice festivals.

The ban on Russian-backed companies and media outlets will also be upheld this year in Berlinale, which will take place in the German capital from February 16 to 26.

“The Siren” by the France-based Iranian director Sepideh Farsi will premiere in the Panorama, a section of the festival that focuses on extraordinary cinema and is a traditional audience favorite and – with its own audience award – has the festival’s biggest jury.

“Dreams’ Gate” directed by Iranian filmmaker Negin Ahmadi will compete in the Generation 14plus competition.

In 2010, Berlinale’s decision to select Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi for its jury caused a conflict between the organizers and Iran.

Panahi was banned by a court from traveling abroad over accusations of holding gatherings, conspiracy and propagandizing against the Iranian government.

Berlinale spotlighted Iranian filmmaker Panahi during its opening day by having an empty chair at the jury press conference.

Consequently, an Iranian film delegation left the festival early in protest over the move.

Photo: A pedestrian walks by a Berlinale bear advertisement for the 67th Berlin International Film Festival – Berlinale near the festival cinema in Berlin, Germany, February 8, 2017. (Reuters/Fabrizio Bensch)

MMS/YAW

Original News : https://www.tehrantimes.com/news/481051/Berlin-Film-Festival-bans-companies-media-outlets-with-ties

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