Tag Archives: Awards

Iranian movie ‘Inversion’ wins Best Film Award at MedFilm Festival in Italy

inversion-film-by-behnam-behzadi-varoonegi-poster‘Inversion’, directed and written by Behnam Behzadi, won the Best Film Award at the 21st edition of MedFilm Festival, held in Rome.

Nine films were competing for the “Amore & Psyche” Prize in the official section, ten documentaries for the “Open Eyes” Prize and twenty short films for the “Methexis” Prize. A total of eleven Iranian films, five feature and six short films, were screend in the section “New Iranian Cinema: Beyond Words”.

Inversion is Behnam Behzadi’s fourth directed feature film. It has previously participated in ‘Un Certain Regard’ section at Cannes and received a positive review. The title is a reference to thermal inversion, a meteorological condition causing air pollution. The drama centers around a woman, Niloufar (acted by Sahar Dolatshahi), who decides to take charge and find ways to better express herself in the smog-teeming metropolis of Tehran.

MedFilm Festival is the oldest international film festival in Rome and the first festival in Italy dedicated to the promotion of Mediterranean and European cinema. MedFilm Festival was established in 1995 on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Cinema and the Barcelona Declaration. Based on the conviction that Diversity is a Value, it encourages relations, cooperation and the development of the film industry between neighbouring countries.

behzradi-behnam-iranian-film-directorABOUT BEHNAM BEHZADI
Behzadi was born in 1972 in Boroujen, Iran. He obtained a master’s degree in filmmaking in Tehran and directed over 20 feature films, short works, tv movies and documentaries. He has also written scripts, worked in editing and collaborated with various scriptwriters including Bahman Ghobadi with whom he was co-script writer for the film ‘Nive mang/Half Moon’.

His first short film ‘Retaliation gained an international success, winning the second prize of FIPA 2000 in France. In 2008 his first feature film ‘Before the Burial’ was awarded in several international festivals. In 2013 ‘Bending the rules’ won the special jury prize at the Tokyo Film Festival, the audience award at Nantes and the Special Prize at Mannheim. Behzadi teaches cinema at Tehran University of Art.

Sources: Mehr News Agency, MedFilm Festival | About, MedFilm Festival | Brochure (“Beyond Words”: p. 9-10 ), MedFilm Festival | Inversion, Persian Film Festival in Australia | B. Behzadi

“The Salesman” crew received a warm welcome in Iran after winning two awards at Cannes Festival (Photos)

Filmmaker Asghar Farhadi and actors Shahab Hosseini and Taraneh Alidoosti got an overwhelming welcome in Tehran after arriving home from the 69th Cannes Film Festival, where Farhadi won the best screenplay prize and Shahab Hosseini received the Palme d’Or for best actor.

The film, whose screenplay was also written by Farhadi, is about Emad (Hosseini) and Rana (Taraneh Alidoosti) who move into a new flat in the center of Tehran. An incident linked to the previous tenant dramatically changes the young couple’s life.

Shahab Hosseini and Asghar Farhadi had worked together in “A Separation“. The first Iranian film to win the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2012. “A Separation” also won the Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film and the Golden Bear for Best Film and the Silver Bears for Best Actress and Best Actor (Shahab Hosseini and Peyman Moaadi), becoming the first Iranian film to win the Golden Bear. Farhadi’s “The Past” (Le Passé) had been nominated for a Palme d’Or in 2013.

Sources: Festival de Cannes, Tehran Times 1, Payvand Iran News, Wikipedia | A Separation, Facebook | Festival de Cannes – Page OfficielleTehran Times 2, Mehr News Agency 1, ISCA, Tehran Picture Agency, Mehr News Agency 2,

Iranian cartoonist wins top award at contest in Luxembourg

The theme of the 9th International Contest of Caricature and Cartoon in Vianden, Luxembourg was “My Home Is My Castle”. A six-member jury selected the three winners and three trophies from 1312 submitted drawings by 504 artists from 33 countries, including caricaturists and cartoonists from Russia, Syria, Turkey, Poland, Portugal, Nicaragua, Peru, many artists from Iran, China, Croatia, Germany, Canada, Cuba, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Ukraine.

Iranian cartoonist Mohammad Habibi has won the first prize, Angel Boligan from Mexico and Klaus Pitter Austria were awarded the second and third prizes. Agim Sulaj from Italy, Raúl Zuleta from Colombia and Zbigniew Kolaczek from Poland received honorable mentions.

The winning works and a selection of entries were displayed at the Museum of Caricature and Cartoon of Vianden. The museum was initiated by Florin Balaban and his wife Sandra. Balaban is a known Luxembourgian political cartoonist.

Sources: Payvand Iran News, Der Trierer (in German),

Winners at RoboCup IranOpen 2016 (Photos)

The 11th edition of RoboCup IranOpen took place at Tehran International Fairground. Around 2000 university and high school students from different countries competed in three categories including humanoids, flying robots and rescuers, divided into different leagues and difficulty levels. A total of 320 teams, 306 from Iran and 14 teams from abroad (Afghanistan, Canada, China, Germany, the Netherlands, Peru, South Korea, United Kingdom and the USA), competed at this event.

The IranOpen has been organized by the Iranian RoboCup National Committee and Qazvin Azad University. The Committee was officially formed in July 2006 with the objective of promoting robotics and artificial intelligence research.

Winners RoboCup Soccer – 2D Simulation League
1st – Nexus 2D (Ferdowsi University Mashhad, Iran)
2nd – Miracle 2016 (Hefei Normal University, China)
3rd – MT2016 (Hefei University, China)
Technical challenge: Shiraz (Shiraz, Iran)

Winners RoboCup Soccer – 3D Simulation League
1st – UTAustinVilla (University of Texas at Austin, USA)
2nd – Apollo3D (Nanjing University of Posts and Telecommunications, China)
3rd – Kylinsky3D (Hohai University Wentian College, China)

Winners RoboCup Soccer – Small Size Robot League
1st – Immortals (Robotics Engineering Center, University of Tehran)
2nd – MRL (Azad University of Qazvin, Iran)
3rd – ZJUNLict (Zhejiang University, China)
Small Size robot soccer (or F180) focuses on the problem of intelligent multi-agent cooperation and control in a highly dynamic environment with a hybrid centralized/distributed system.

Winners RoboCup Soccer – Humanoid League (Adult, teen and kid size)
Adult: 1st – Baset Adult-Size (Baset Pazhuh Tehran Co, Iran)
Teen: 1st – AUTMan Teen (Amirkabir University, Iran / University of Manitoba, Canada)
Kid Size
1st – Bold Hearts (University of Hertfordshire, United Kingdom)
2nd – Parand Kid-Size (Azad University of Parand, Iran)
3rd – FUmanoids (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)

Winners RoboCup Soccer – Standard Platform League
1st – Nao Team HTWK (HTWK Leipzig, Germany)
2nd – DAlnamite (TU Berlin / DAI-Labor, Germany)
Innovation challenge: MRL-SPL (Azad University of Qazvin, Iran)
The RoboCup Standard Platform League is a RoboCup robot soccer league, in which all teams compete with identical robots.

Winners RoboCup Rescue – Rescue Agent Simulation League
1st MRL (Azad University of Qazvin, Iran)
2nd S.O.S (Amirkabir University of Technology Tehran, Iran)
3rd Poseidon (Farzanegan High School Tehran, Iran)
Technical challenge: RAS-ROSHD (Roshd High School Tehran, Iran)

Winners RoboCup Rescue – Rescue Robot League
1st – MRL (Azad University of Qazvin, Iran)
2nd – YRA (Azad University of Yazd, Iran)
3rd – VRU (Vali-e-Asr University of Rafsanjan, Iran)
Skill, discovery and mobility challenge: MRL
Flying rescue challenge: YRA

Winners RoboCup@Work
1st – ACE IAUK (Azad University of Kerman, Iran)
2nd – MEC (Shariati Technical College Tehran, Iran)

Winners RoboCup Junior – Soccer Open
1st – Helli Afra (Allameh Helli High School 10, Tehran, Iran)
2nd – AMOS (Salam Zeynoddin High School, Iran)
3rd – Allameh Tabatabaei (Allameh Tabatabaei High School)

Winners IranOpenDeminer – Tele-Operated Deminer Robots
1st – YRA (Azad University of Yazd, Iran)
2nd – Pasargad (Amirkabir University of Technology, Iran)
3rd (joint) – SRC (Azad University of Tabriz, Iran) and Malayer University (Malayer University, Hamedan, Iran)

Winners IranOpenDeminer – Small Size Intelligent Deminer Robots
1st – khayyam Robotic (Azad University of Neyshabur, Iran)
2nd – ROBOSINA (Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan, Iran)
3rd – RTL (Azad University of Arak, Iran)

Winners IranOpenUAV
1st (joint) – MRL (Azad University of Qazvin, Iran) and KN2C (K.N.Toosi University Tehran, Iran)
3rd – Cyrus UAV (Azad University of Kermanshah, Iran)

Winners IranOpenROV
1st – MRL (Azad University of Qazvin, Iran)
2nd – anZan Of Persian Gulf (Applied Science University of Ahvaz, Iran)

Related articles: The other Iran | Robocup

Video: Mehr News Agency | RoboCup IranOpen 2016

Sources: 2016 IranOpen; Mehr News Agency (MNA) 1; MNA 2; BORNA News; Fars News; IRNA 1; IRNA 2; ISNA 1; ISNA 2 (in Persian); Jam-e Jam Online 1; Jam-e Jam Online 2; dai-labor.de; Baltimore Sun; Epoch Times (in Persian); Facebook | DAI-Labor

Iranian students win 3rd place at FISU World University Chess Championship (Photos)

The 14th FISU World University Chess Championship (WUCC) was held from April 9th to April 15th, 2016 in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

Eight students represented Iran at the tournament. The women’s chess team consisted of WGM Atousa Pourkashiyan, WGM Mitra Hejazipour, WIM Ghazal Hakimifard and Khalaji Hanieh. GM Pouya Idani, IM Amirreza Pourramezanali, FM Nima Javanbakht and Ali Faghirnavaz formed the men’s team.

In the women’s division all three best placed players attained 6,5 points. WGM Ni Shiqun of China won gold, WIM Ghazal Hakimifard won silver, Iran’s best result at FISU WUCC 2016, and WIM Anna Warakomska of Poland bronze.

GM Hovhannes Gabuzyan of Armenia won the men’s gold medal with 8 points. GM Vladimir Fedoseev of Russia secured silver (7 points) and GM Pavel Ponkratov of Russia got bronze with 6,5 points. Iran’s best player in the men’s division, IM Amirreza Pourramezanali, finished in sixth place attaining 6 points like Serbian IM Marko Nenezic (4th) and GM Samvel Ter-Sahakyan of Armenia (5th).

WIM Alina Bivol placed fourth to complete the three best results for the team award for Russia. Her result combined with those of Fedoseev and Ponkratov garnered the first place team trophy for Russia (19,5 points). The Armenian team of GM Gabuzyan, GM Ter-Sahakyan and WIM Maria Gevorgyan won the runner-up trophy (19 points). The Iranian team of WIM Ghazal Hakimifard, WGM Mitra Hejazipour and IM Amirreza Pourramezanali won third place (18,5 points).

Sources: chess-results.com, FISU | Chess, iusf.ir (in Persian), Borna News

Three Iranian films won awards at Garden State Film Festival in New Jersey

The Garden State Film Festival (GSFF) is a film festival in the United States held in Atlantic City, New Jersey which showcases over 150 independent films annually. Three Iranian movies won awards at the 14th GSFF held this year from March 31st to April 3rd.

“Oblivion Season” by director Abbas Rafei and “Ashes” by Alan Coulson from the UK shared the International Narrative Feature Award. The movie “Oblivion Season”, starring Sareh Bayat and Pejman Bazeghi, is about an ex-prostitute who starts a new life by marrying her lover but leaving the shadow of her dark past turns out not to be as easy as it had seemed beforehand.

“Lima” by Afshin Roshanbakht and Vahid Jafari received the International Animated Short Film Award. Lima repeats old memories trying to remember his lost father until he himself gets old.

“Blue-Eyed Boy” directed by Amir-Masoud Soheili won the International Narrative Short Film Award. The film tells the story of a young boy suffering from an unusual type of color blindness that causes him to see the world in blue.

Sources: Tehran Times, Wikipedia | Garden State Film Festival, Mehr News Agency, imdb, gsff.org

Iranian documentary wins Amnesty International Film Prize

Mehrdad Oskouei’s ‘Starless Dreams’ (Royahaye Dame Sobh) along with ‘Fuocoammare’ (Fire at Sea) by Gianfranco Rosi have won the Amnesty International Film Prize at the 66th Berlin International Film Festival. Rosi’s documentary film about the refugee crisis in the Mediterranean off the Italian island of Lampedusa, won also the Golden Bear prize for Best Film.

Oskouei, one of Iran’s best documentary filmmakers, explores in ‘Starless Dreams’ the anguish and joys of girls in a juvenile correctional facility on the outskirts of Tehran. His small, all-male crew spent 20 days talking to the young women who gave them surprising access to their lives and feelings. The film won in Iran the Best Documentary Director Award at the 34th Fajr Film Festival earlier this year.

The German branch of Amnesty International has awarded the Amnesty International Film Prize for the first time at the Berlinale 2005. The aim of the prize is to draw the attention of audiences and representatives of the film industry to the theme of human rights and encourage filmmakers to tackle this topic. German actress Meret Becker, Swiss film maker Dani Levy and Markus Beeko, Director of Campaigns and Communications for Amnesty International Germany were the members of this independent jury at the Berlinale 2016.

Iranian filmmaker Mehrdad Oskouei (1st R) and Italian director Gianfranco Rosi (2nd L) with Jury members Dani Levy (1st L) and Meret Becker (2nd R) in Berlin - Feb 20, 2016. Photo credits: Henning Schacht / Amnesty International

Iranian filmmaker Mehrdad Oskouei (1st R) and Italian director Gianfranco Rosi (2nd L) with Jury members Dani Levy (1st L) and Meret Becker (2nd R) in Berlin – Feb 20, 2016. Photo credits: Henning Schacht / Amnesty International

About Mehrdad Oskouei
Oskouei, an independent producer, filmmaker, photographer and researcher, was born in Tehran, Iran in 1969. He has a B.A. in film direction from the University of Arts, starting in the theatre in 1981 and the film world in 1988. In 2010, Oskouei received the Prince Claus Award from the Netherlands.

Sources: Tavoos Online, Berlinale, Hollywod Reporter, Reuters, Wikipedia | Starless Dreams, Fajr Film Festival (in Persian)