Art And Culture

Health Films to Help Reduce Social Harm

Pouran Derakhshandeh (L) and Hassan HashemiPouran Derakhshandeh (L) and Hassan Hashemi

The closing ceremony of the First Health Film Festival was held in Tehran on Saturday, August 28. The Health Ministry would help produce 10 films in the field of health it was announced at the event, Mehr News Agency reported.

The first round of the event, which was launched on August 22, was largely welcomed by artists and the public as well as NGOs and those involved in the health sector, festival secretary Ebrahim Darughezadeh said.

"The festival seeks to pave the ground for producing more works in the field of healthcare which is a common concern among the public," noted Hadi Ayazi, deputy in social affairs at the Health Ministry.

Later, Minister of Health Hassan Hashemi, honored the veteran female film director Pouran Derakhshandeh who has made influential films on social harm and mental health including 'Mute Contact' (1986), 'A Little Bird of Happiness' (1987), 'Candle in the Wind' (2003) and 'Hush! Girls Don't Scream' (2013). "We should empower people in the field of health and I hope more artists get involved in the issue through this festival," the minister said.

Derakshandeh, 65, pointed to the need for movies on the subjects of mental health in the society as a lot of social harm is rooted in the lack of awareness among families. "We need to deal with some taboos through the medium of art and inform people about important issues. I hope we get to a point where instead of spending funds on treatment, we can use it for training and prevention," she added. The actor, filmmaker and TV host Rambod Javan was also honored for producing the entertainment show 'Khandevaneh', a popular program that makes people laugh by criticizing social issues in a humorous way.

"Khandevaneh has had deep influence in the community. Among 500 audiences who attend the show every night, there are 10 who say they have given up taking anti-depressants, stopped smoking or solved their marital problems," Javan said. "If people are treated well and feel happy, they will not get addicted or show aggressive behavior toward others".

He invited the health minister to take part in the program as a guest saying that people trust this show and "I am sure your presence in an episode will be helpful".

Winners of different sections including short films, documentaries, trailers, TV series, TV shows and news were awarded during the ceremony.