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Critic calls international section of Fajr Film Festival a big joke

TEHRAN, Dec. 30 (Mehr News Agency) -- The international section of the Fajr Film Festival has been described as a big joke by Iranian critic Ali Mo'allem. "The section is merely disseminative, it has been a big joke," he told the Mehr News Agency on Sunday.

"If the section is to be competitive, then the production crews of the selected movies should be invited to the festival," he added.

"Few foreign filmmakers relish participating in the festival due to the tight control assumed (by organizers of the festival) over the selection of films for this section.

"Many foreign filmmakers don't allow their films to be cut as required (by Iranian officials) for screening in the festival," he explained.

The organizers of film galas feel the presence of foreign cineastes to be essential at such events. However, the Fajr Festival has not been able to attract foreign filmmakers at any time in its 25-year history, said Moa'llem, who is also managing director of Donya-ye Tassvir, a Persian film monthly magazine.

Iran's most prestigious cinematic event, the Fajr International Film Festival, is held annually in Tehran from February 1 until 11.

... Payvand News - 12/30/07 ... --

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