Asghar Farhadi, acclaimed director of A Separation, the winner of this year’s Best Foreign Language Oscar, arrived in Iran yesterday, welcomed by a large crowd of supporters as well as official representatives of Iran’s Ministry of Culture and Guidance.
Upon arrival, Farhadi said: “The real appreciation of the Ministry of Guidance can only be expressed to me by re-opening the House of Cinema.”
The House of Cinema, an independent body representing the film and cinema community in Iran, has been recently shut down over a number of disputes with the authorities.
Farhadi arrived in Tehran from Paris together with his family yesterday and after announcing that all his awards will be donated to the Museum of Cinema said once more: “House of Cinema has to be re-opened, there is no other way…Be certain that it will be re-opened.”
Farhadi refuted all rumours about him planning to emigrate from Iran and said: “I will never emigrate and have no plan on emigrating. I will live all my life in Iran.”
On the subject of his acceptance speech at the Oscars and that some had expected a more charged speech from him he said: “We must accept that the Oscars is not the place for political disputes but it is rather a cultural event. I said what I believed in and I felt was beneficial to all the people. Obviously if someone else was giving the speech, they might have said something else.”
He went on to add that the kind of national unity that has been triggered by his film has come as a surprise to him adding that: “Today the false separations that had taken hold between people have become more scarce and it is very fulfilling that people, despite their political differences, can gather together as Iranians.”