Jafar Panahi, one of Iran’s most important directors and honorary guest of this year’s Berlinale, has been denied permission to leave Iran. With his film The Circle, Panahi won the Golden Lion in 2000; and with Offside, the Silver Bear in 2006.
At the 60th Berlinale, Panahi was to participate in the panel discussion on “Iranian Cinema: Present and Future. Expectations inside and outside of Iran” during the World Cinema Fund Day.
“We are surprised and deeply regret that a director who has won so many international prizes has been denied the possibility to take part in our anniversary Festival and to speak about his cinematic visions,” Berlinale Director Dieter Kosslick remarked about the incident.
February 16, 2010