Critics’ remarks draw ire of protest film “Exodus” director Hatamikia  

February 8, 2020 - 18:50

TEHRAN – Comments by critics and journalists about “Exodus” provoked the anger of its director, Ebrahim Hatamikia, during a press conference organized in Tehran Friday evening after the premiere of the movie.

“Exodus”, which is on a nowhere-land peasant protest against the local authority that symbolically resembles President Hassan Rouhani’s government, failed to receive the acclaims of the critics who judged the film as falling below expectations.

“Why is the nature of the criticisms and responses to my film like a court trial?” Hatamikia asked the critics and journalists during the press conference at the Mellat Cineplex.

“What is this rude language used in talking about me as a soldier… if I quit, will you be impressed?” he added.

He said that he is really indignant at the way his films have been criticized and noted that he has found the atmosphere increasingly difficult every year.

“I’m not concerned about the storms of criticism, some people may like or dislike my film, but I’m annoyed by coarseness,” he stated.

“Exodus” tells the story of a group of cotton farmers who leave their farms to protest the local official’s unfulfilled promises at the president’s office in the capital.

Hatamikia declined to respond to a journalist who asked for his opinion on the protests that spread across the country last November due to people’s daily economic problems.

However, he did make comments about the issue in response to another journalist who asked, “Is it your intimation in the film that, after 40 years, the Islamic system has not established any mechanism for people’s protests?”

“Why not?” Hatamikia said and added, “We have not found this path. In my opinion, these protests should be allowed and I hope the parliament passes new laws to outline the ways to protest.”

He also expressed his strong desire to make a film about Martyr Qassem Soleimani, the Quds Force commander who was assassinated in a U.S. air raid in Baghdad on January 3.

Photo: Director Ebrahim Hatamikia attends a press conference after the premiere of his movie “Exodus” during the 38th Fajr Film Festival at Tehran’s Mellat Cineplex on February 7, 2020. (ISNA/Hadi Zand)

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