Iran calls on U.S. cineaste to make documentary on Mahdaviat

September 6, 2009 - 0:0

TEHRAN -- Iran has formally proposed American cineaste Michelle Nickelson to make a documentary on Mahdaviat, Shia belief in and efforts to prepare for the appearance of Imam Mahdi (AS) as the savior of humanity.

Nickelson welcomed the proposal, Mohammadreza Eslamlu, a close friend to Ahmadinejad’s art advisor, told the Persian service of Fars News Agency on Saturday.
“Since we think a fresh and accurate portrayal of Iran and Shia should be provided to the world at present, we have asked Michelle Nickelson to make the documentary,” said Eslamlu.
“Under the present circumstances in which we live, Islam, particularly Shia, increasingly has come under attack by the Western media. Thus, it is a good opportunity for us to ask her to travel to Iran in order to become familiar with the truth about Shia and the culture of Mahdaviat and then to introduce them to the rest of the world,” he added.
Eslamlu lamented over the work of Christiane Amanpour, CNN chief international correspondent, who produced a three-part series “God’s Warriors”, in which she considers the rise of religious fundamentalism as a political force in the world.
Her team ventured to several countries in the Middle East including Iran for the documentary.
“She never presented an accurate image of Iran in ‘God’s Warriors’, moreover, it is absolutely against the culture of Mahdaviat and Shia,” Eslamlu noted.
“By means of this proposal to Nickelson, we intend to correct this inaccurate and distorted image,” he stated.
He expressed hope that the project would begin as soon as the new administration of the Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance makes the preliminary arrangements for production.
The screenplay must be approved by the Culture Ministry to obtain a production license in Iran.
The president and chief operating officer of Nickelson Entertainment Group/Mirage, Nickelson was to make “We the People of the Islamic Republic of Iran”, a documentary about the Iranian presidential election in June.
However, she could not make the documentary because of post-election unrest in Iran.
Eslamlu had been assigned by Ahmadinejad’s art advisor, Javad Shamaqdari, to accompany Nickelson in making the documentary.
Photo: One of Tehran street has been illuminated for the birth anniversary of Imam Mahdi (AS) on August 17, 2008. (Mehr/Majid Asgaripur)