Marzieh Vafamehr

October 10, 2011 by staff 

Marzieh VafamehrMarzieh Vafamehr, An Iranian actor has been sentenced to one year in prison and 90 lashes for her starring role in the Australian film My Tehran for sale.

In a result that could have come from the pages of the script for the film, Marzieh Vafamehr was arrested in July and received her sentence at the weekend, according to reports citing Iranian opposition website.

The exact nature of the acts he was charged is not clear and the Iranian embassy in Canberra did not respond to the request for the age for comment. Vafamehr often appears with a shaved head and unveiled in the film, which also explores cultural oppression in Iran and taboos, such as drug use.

One of the Australian producers of the film producer Kate Croser Adelaide Cyan Films, confirmed the sentence. Neither the producers nor the Melbourne-based film by Iranian director-Australian Granaz Moussavi, declined to comment because Vafamehr family wishes to let the case follow the proper legal channels. Vafamehr appeal the ruling.

Shot secretly in Iran with a local team in 2008, my Tehran for sale is a work of fiction. However, in an earlier interview Moussavi said he also relied on their own experiences and those of the people he met as an interpreter at the Woomera Detention Centre for the film.

”I think that when you do something independent of Iran, … writing or filmmaking, there’s always the problem of getting critical or negative thought,”he told The Age in 2008.

The film focuses en”Marzieh”(played by childhood friend Marzieh Mousavi Vafamehr), an aspiring actress in control of their country for artistic expression. The government has banned Marzieh work, and her affair with an expatriate Iranian-Australian (Amir Chegini) leads to consider life outside Iran.

The film is also about the secret life of the youth of Iran, in a touching scene, the youths arrested in an underground dance party waiting for their punishment as the sound of a whip is heard in the background.

The film has never been officially screened in Iran, but had its debut in Australia at the Adelaide Festival in 2009. His international debut was at the International Film Festival in Toronto, and the film Moussavi tour around the country last year as part of the Human Rights Arts and Film Festival. The movie makers won an Independent Spirit Film Awards in 2009 inside.

Human Rights Film Festival director Matt Benetti said the news of the arrest was a shock Vafamehr.

”It’s just come home much more,”he said. Iran”, in particular, seems to censor many works of political art and I think it’s very important to get out.”

Katrina Sedgwick, director of the Adelaide Film Festival, described news of the arrest of Vafamehr como”surrealista.” The festival had helped develop the film Moussavi and contributed about and 125,000 for its production.

The film is scheduled to be shown as part of a film festival of women’s rights Amnesty International later this year.

Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa James Lynch spokesman said the film industry workers were the last group to be targeted by the Iranian authorities and described the flogging sentence como””cruel Vafamehr, inhuman and degrading.

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