TEHRAN, Jan. 13 (Mehr News Agency) -- Four Iranian actors were honored during the First Iranian Cinema Actors Celebration in Tehran on Friday evening.
"We are proud to honor veterans in the first step," said Roya Teimurian, the president of the Iranian Actors Society, which founded the celebration.
Actress Turan Mehrzad, who appeared in the roles of Mahshid's mother in "Hamun" (1989) and Leila's mother in "Leila" (1996), both directed by Dariush Mehrjuii, was the first honoree.
The organizers screened a film of Mehrjuii speaking about Mehrzad in which he said, "She was one of Iran's distinguished and popular actresses. 'Hamun' was our first collaboration. We could not imagine anyone else for the role of Mahshid's mother besides Mrs. Mehrzad."
"After a 60-year career in cinema, this is the first time that I have been invited to such a celebration, and I am proud that Dariush Mehrjuii speaks about me," said Mehrzad before receiving her lifetime achievement award from prominent stage and screen actor Ali Nasirian.
"She was and is one of the stars of Iranian theater. This decision of the celebration is very wise," Nasirian said.
Afterwards, veteran actor Reza Karamrezaii, who starred in Rakhshan Bani-Etemad's "Narges" (1991), took the stage in his wheelchair.
"I was very nervous when I invited Mr. Karamrezaii to appear in the film because it was very hard for me to direct him. My confidence in him is due to his activities in theater as a director as well as for his valuable translations. I believe that transferring their knowledge to the younger generation is the best way to appreciate such masters," Bani-Etemad said in the film screened during this part of the ceremony.
"When I finished writing my memoirs, I told myself, 'What a long way I have passed' and asked myself whether I am eager to cross such a way again. I said 'No,'" octogenarian Karamrezaii said.
Jamshid Mashayekhi, who was invited to the stage by Karamrezaii himself, presented the lifetime achievement award to the veteran actor.
"Actors and athletes have a tragic fate. Their bodies are their capital. When they get old, they have to retire, but this society's move decreases the sad feelings," Karamrezaii noted.
Another honoree of the program, actress, dubber, and radio announcer Jaleh Olov, received her award from prominent director and star of stage and screen Davud Rashidi.
"I am proud that my name has been mentioned alongside the best actors of the past few decades. I am happy that I was able to work and experience my people's affection," Olov said in the presentation ceremony.
The last part of the program was dedicated to Jamshid Layeq.
"Jamshid is my master. He loves theater but believes he was never appreciated," Jamshid Mashayekhi said about the octogenarian Layeq.
"I don't know what to say among these great artists. The others said everything already. I thank Ali Nasirian, who instructed me in theater," Layeq said.
Before the presentation ceremony, the organizers honored deceased actors through film clips featuring Iranian thespians Nersi Gorgia, Hossein Kasbian, Ahmad Qadakchian, Pupak Goldareh, Gholamreza Tabatabaii, Reza Saeidi, Manuchehr Nozari, Jafar Bozorgi, Sorush Khalili, and Maliheh Nazari, who all passed away over the past year.
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