Art And Culture

Farhadi Talks About His Award, Next Film

Farhadi Talks About His Award, Next FilmFarhadi Talks About His Award, Next Film

The two-time Oscar-winning director Asghar Farhadi gave a master class Tuesday, at the Doha Film Institute’s Qumra event and also spoke to a small group of journalists, all via Skype from Madrid, Spain, where he is in pre-production on his untitled next project.

In his first interview since recently winning his second Academy Award for best foreign language film for ‘The Salesman’, Farhadi talked to Variety about his prize.

Although the film’s nomination in the Oscars among over 80 submissions from across the globe was surely due to its quality, some believe that political considerations (connected to the Trump travel ban and Farhadi’s decision not to attend the ceremony) may have affected Academy voters to vote for ‘The Salesman’ to protest against the ban.

Speaking about the issue, Farhadi said, “The film was on its own journey before all this happened. I have no control over what happened afterwards, and for myself I can say there was no calculation. I just reacted spontaneously to the travel ban. As far as making conjectures on what criteria persuaded people to vote for it or not, it’s quite complicated. I don’t know how one could know why voters chose the film.”

All the movies Farhadi has made so far are about resiliency under pressure. When asked if he thinks he would ever make a comedy, the director responded, “that is one of my biggest wishes, to make a film dealing with human reality through comedy. I hope to do that soon, when I go back to Iran”.

  100% Spanish

Also talking to Screen Daily, Farhadi confirmed his next film will start shooting in Spain in September, with a cast including Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem.

However Farhadi revealed the high-profile, real-life couple will “not necessarily” play an on-screen couple in the Spanish-language feature.

“Once again there are different couples in my film, not only one,” Farhadi said, of what is a recurring theme of his work. “The film is again about family and family relationships. But there are also some new aspects in it,” he added.

The non-Spanish speaker said he has written the script in Farsi and it has been translated into Spanish. “I don’t speak Spanish,” he explained. “But I have time between now and the shoot to at least become more familiar with the music of the film and do my best”.

The auteur, who previously shot ‘The Past’ in French in 2013, said making the film in a foreign language would not compromise his vision. “I don’t feel the change of language changes your voice,” he suggested. “(My voice is an) empathy with all the characters, a level of compassion that is general”.

Unlike ‘The Past’ which had a cast of Iranian and French actors, the new film will be hundred percent Spanish and all the actors and the characters are Spanish-speaking. The movie should be ready for next year.

As with all his films, few further details are known about the new feature, except that it is being produced by Pedro and Agustin Almodovar’s El Deseo and sold by the French company Memento Film.


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