Berlin Programs Jafar Panahi Retrospective to Protest Imprisonment
COLOGNE, Germany -- The Berlin International Film Festival will turn this year's event into a two-week protest against the imprisonment of Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi, programming a retrospective of the director's films.
Berlin said Tuesday it will screen four of Panahi's features, one for each of the festival's main sections: Offside, which won the Silver Bear in Berlin in 2005, will screen in competition; The Circle -- a Golden Lion winner in Venice -- in Berlin's Panorama sidebar; Cannes' Un Certain Regard winner Crimson Gold in Forum and The White Balloon, a Cannes Golden Camera winner, in Berlin's youth film sidebar Generation.
Berlin has also kept Panahi on as an official member of this year's international jury, despite the fact the Persian director is in jail in Tehran, serving a six-year sentence for making a film without official government sanction. The Iranian regime has also banned him from making movies for the next 20 years.
The 61st Berlin International Film Festival runs Feb. 10-20.