Cannes Film Festival condemns arrest of Iranian actor Taraneh Alidoosti

Cannes Film Festival organizers on Monday called for the immediate release of Iranian actor Taraneh Alidoosti, who was arrested over the weekend by local authorities on charges of spreading falsehoods about the ongoing nationwide protests.

In a statement shared on its official Twitter page, the prestigious film gala supported the 38-year-old actress as it condemned her arrest by the Iranian government.

“Iranian actress #TaranehAlidoosti was arrested on Saturday 17 December as a result of her support for the freedom movement in her country. @Festival_Cannes strongly condemns this arrest and demands her immediate release,” the Cannes Film Festival said in a tweet using the hashtag “#FreeTaranehAlidoosti”.

Alidoosti, star of Asghar Farhadi’s Oscar-winning film ”The Salesman,” was taken into custody Saturday, a week after she posted on Instagram expressing her solidarity with the first man recently executed for crimes allegedly committed against during the demonstrations.

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In May, the actress attended the 75th edition of the famous European film extravaganza to present her film Leila’s Brothers. Directed by Saeed Roustayi, the Iranian drama has been selected to compete for the festival’s top honor, the Palme d’Or.

Ashgar Farhadi’s favorite actress, #TaranehAlidoosti was at #Cannes2022 for her role in Saeed Roustayi’s ‘Leila’s Brothers’. In solidarity with her peaceful struggle for women’s freedom and rights, @Festival_Cannes expresses its full support for her,” the Cannes Film Festival said in a later post on the microblogging site.

According to the report posted on the state media’s official Telegram channel, the actress was arrested for not providing “any document as per her allegations”.

In her post, Alidoosti said: ”His name was Mohsen Shekari. Any international organization that watches this bloodshed and does not take action is a disgrace to humanity.” Shekari was executed on December 9 after being accused by an Iranian court of blocking a street in Tehran and attacking a member of the country’s security forces with a knife.

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Last month, two other famous actors Hengameh Ghaziani and Katayoun Riahi were arrested by the authorities for expressing their solidarity with the protesters on social media. They were later released.

Alidoosti’s Instagram account, which she used to openly express her solidarity with the protesters, has been suspended. The actor found support in industry colleagues such as Iranian-French actress Golshifteh Farahani (“The Patient Stone”), Cameron Bailey, head of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and British-Iranian actress Nazanin Boniadi of “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” fame. “Brave Iranian actress arrested,” Farahani wrote on Instagram.

Bailey said he hopes the actor is released soon.

Taraneh Alidoosti is one of Iran’s most talented and acclaimed actresses. We were proud to screen her latest film, Removal at TIFF22. I hope she will soon be free to continue representing the power of Iranian cinema,” he tweeted.

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Boniadi said Alidusti was arrested because she “posted a photo of herself without the compulsory hijab in solidarity with the protesters”.

Iran has been hit by protests since the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini on September 16. Amini was arrested in September by Iran’s morality police, who said she was not properly covering her hair with the mandatory Islamic hijab headscarf. He collapsed in a police station and died three days later.

Her death sparked protests in dozens of cities across the country, and the government responded with a heavy crackdown.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is automatically generated by a syndicated feed.)

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