Art And Culture

Iran’s First Female Filmmaker Honored

Iran’s First Female Filmmaker HonoredIran’s First Female Filmmaker Honored

Veteran actress and the first female filmmaker in the history of Iran cinema Shahla Riahi, was honored in a ceremony at Charsou Cineplex in Tehran on Sunday.

The event was organized by renowned film director and actress Niki Karimi who said, “I congratulate her for being the first woman in Iran who made a film almost 60 years ago. She was really courageous in doing so and paved the way for people like me to continue the path”, ISNA reported.

Riahi, 89, was born in Tehran, and started stage acting in 1944. In 1956, she became the first Iranian woman to direct a feature film ‘Marjan’. She has acted in over 120 films, plays and TV series.

The veteran actress received her commendation plaque from Karimi and briefly said, “I thank you all and hope I have left a good impact in your minds. I love you and wish you success. If I am here now, it is because of your kind attention and I hope to always stay with you”.

Her son, Manuchehr, who accompanied said his mother was suffering from Alzheimer’s. “Her life these days is difficult due to her memory problem, but I hope she stays with us and encourages young directors like Karimi”.

Before the 1979 Islamic Revolution, there were only a couple of female filmmakers in Iran and Riahi did a great job to direct a movie in the male-dominated film domain.

Actor and producer Habib Esmaili who cooperated with Riahi in some movies talked about her characteristics saying, “She was never ill-tempered at work and I cannot forget her discipline”.

Actress Pantea Bahram also referred to Riahi’s boldness in directing a film over half a century ago and said, “In a male chauvinistic world where all the rules are set by men, she was bold enough to make a film. Although she could not continue what she started, it proved to be the building block in the career of other women directors like Karimi years later.”

A part of ‘Marjan’ was screened at the event for the first time in 60 years which was warmly welcomed and applauded by the audience.