Iran News ...


07/08/09

Bochum festival cancels Iranian films wins for political reason


TEHRAN, July 8 (Mehr News Agency) -- The political climate created between Iran and the West after Iran's June presidential election has also affected art and cultural issues, as organizers of a German festival cancelled wins of two films of indie Iranian filmmakers.

"Tehran 318," a short film directed by Soran Mardookhi on a young taxi driver, was screened at the Specials section of the 19th International Videofestival Bochum, which was held from June 18 to 20.

In addition, "Cold Blood," a documentary by Amir Mehran on victims of wars, competed at the International Video-Contest section of the event.

The films have been produced by Setak Films, a private film company based in Sanandaj in Iran's western province of Kordestan.

"The organizers of the festival took back the awards, which were worth 2500 euros in total, as a result of the events that occurred in Iran after the election," Setak Films announced in press release published on Tuesday.

"They said that the festival is being sponsored by the German government and the events in the aftermath of the election have apparently affected relations between Iran and Germany. As a consequence, they can not give the awards to Iranian filmmakers," the company explained.

According to Setak Films, the directors of the films, as award winners, attended a press conference held by the organizers a day before the festival's closing ceremony.

"They always claim to support human rights, but they mingled art with politics and left a distasteful image of the festival in the filmmakers' minds," Setak Films stated in conclusion.

Unrest erupted in Iran after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was declared the winner of June presidential election, which is disputed by his reformist rival Mir Hossein Mousavi.

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