COLOGNE, Germany – The Iranian government has banned co-director Kamboziya Partovi and actress Maryam Moghadam from leaving the country to promote their new film, Closed Curtain.
Both Partovi and Moghadam were in Berlin earlier this month for the film’s world premiere. Writer and co-director Jafar Panahi won a Silver Bear for best screenplay but was unable to attend as he remains under house arrest in Tehran.
Iran protested the award, calling the film an “illegal act” and demanding the Berlin Film Festival “correct their behavior.” Like Panahi’s last feature, This is Not a Film, Closed Curtain was made in secret and in violation of the 20-year directing ban Tehran has imposed on Panahi for “anti-government propaganda.”
Now Iran has also confiscated Partovi and Moghadam’s passports, preventing them from leaving the country. Closed Curtain is just kicking off its festival run. It will make its Asian debut next month as the closing film of the Hong Kong Film Festival.