In support of the convicted Iranian director Jafar Panahi,
the Berlin International Film Festival is launching a number of initiatives at
the upcoming Berlinale.
In his films, Jafar Panahi critically explores the social
situation in his homeland. His conviction violates the right to freedom of
opinion and expression in the arts.
In 2011 the Berlinale will show several films by Jafar
Panahi in a number of its sections and so draw attention to the extraordinary
oeuvre for which this artist has been sentenced by the Iranian regime. The first
of his films to be screened at this year’s Berlinale will be the award-winning
film Offside (2006, Silver Bear) on February 11 at
4:30 pm in the Berlinale Palast.
On the following days of the Berlinale, other Panahi films
will be presented in the Panorama, Forum, Generation and
Berlinale Shorts sections.
For February 17, 2011 the Berlinale
Talent Campus and the World Cinema Fund
are organizing a panel discussion with Iranian filmmakers and artists on
censorship, and the restriction of freedom of opinion and expression in Iran.
Iranian director and actor Rafi Pitts (The Hunter,
Berlinale Competition 2010) has already
confirmed his attendance. The participation of other filmmakers and artists
living in exile as well as of prominent Berlinale guests will be announced soon.
The event will take place at the Hebbel am Ufer / HAU1 at 2:00 pm.
Festival Director Dieter Kosslick states: “We invited Jafar
Panahi to be on the International Jury in 2011. But then in December 2010 he was
sentenced to six years imprisonment and banned from filmmaking for the next 20
years. We are going to use every opportunity to protest against this drastic
See also: Press Releases from March 3,
, December 6, 2010
und December 22, 2010