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TORONTO – Scottish filmmaker Anthony Baxter wants his Donald Trump expose yanked from a state-sponsored film festival in Iran to support an Iranian filmmaker imprisoned before he could attend the Vancouver International Film Festival.
“I find it particularly appalling that You’ve Been Trumped might play in Tehran when across the city, filmmaker Mojtaba Mirtahmash is languishing in Evin Prison,” Baxter said Thursday.
Iranian authorities last Septembrer barred Mirtahmash from travelling to the Toronto International Film Festival to screen his documentary This Is Not a Film, about a day in fellow Iranian director Jafar Panahi’s life.
And Mirtahmash was subsequently arrested and imprisoned before he could travel to Vancouver for a screening of This Is Not A Film.
“I was hoping to meet him last month in Canada, where we both had films screening at festivals, but he was arrested before he could make the trip,” Baxter said.
The Scottish filmmaker said the state-sponsored Iran International Documentary Film Festival programmed You’ve Been Trumped without his permission after receiving a DVD copy from a sales agent.
“We declined an invitation last month from the Iranian festival, but today I was informed by an Iranian filmmaker that the film is to be screened next week,” Baxter said.
He added the Iranian authorities have not replied to his immediate request that they withdraw his film, which had its world premiere at the Hot Docs film festival in Toronto in May 2011.
You’ve Been Trumped portrays Donald Trump bullying and harassing rural residents in Scotland to build a luxury golf course there.
The irony is Baxter’s documentary recently won the Social Justice award at the Hampton’s International Film Festival, and the film is set to play at two upcoming European Human Rights film festivals in Croatia and Poland.
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