Talebi to make biopic of Iranian nomad schools’ founder

September 18, 2008

TEHRAN -- Iranian director Mohammad-Ali Talebi plans to make a biopic of the founder of Iranian nomad schools Mohammad Bahmanbeigi.

“Over the past two years, I have been considering various proposals for my next film, but I was searching for a project with a different perspective,” Talebi told the Persian service of MNA on Wednesday.
“Thus, I became familiar with Mohammad Bahmanbeigi – a man who dedicated his life to educating nomads,” he added.
“About 40 years ago, a great number of nomad children were educated by this man by means of an advanced method. As a result his efforts, many of his students progressed to prominent positions” he explained.
Entitled “The Lights of the Plain”, the biopic will be produced in two versions -- a feature-length film and a 13-episode TV series.
The film plot has been submitted to one IRIB for preproduction assessment.
Kamran Heidari has previously featured Bahmanbeigi’s life in the short film “The White Tents” (2003).
Currently living in Shiraz, Bahmanbeigi was honored by the Iranian Society of Cultural Works and Luminaries during a ceremony in Tehran in November 2005.
Bahmanbeigi was born in 1920 into the Bahmanbeigi Tribe of the Qashqai nomads living in the Fars region in southern Iran.
His father, Mahmud Khan, who was the leader of the tribe, was exiled along with his family to Tehran following the tribes’ riot in southern Iran in the 1920s. Mohammad continued his education that he had begun with his family procurator in the tribe.
He studied law in the University of Tehran and also learned English, German, and French languages.
It was painful for him to see the tribesmen remain in illiteracy. So he came to Shiraz, and designed a mobile educational system to enable nomad children to continue to learn during their migrations.
Due to his efforts, the first nomad school began educating the Qashqai tribesmen in the Fars region in 1951 and the system was expanded to other Iranian nomadic regions.
Photo: Mohammad Bahmanbeigi (L) and head of board of directors of the Iranian Society of Cultural Works and Luminaries Mehdi Mohaqqeq pose for a photograph during a ceremony held by the society in Tehran on November 21, 2005. (CHN/Hassan Ghaffari)