Iran’s “White Whale” named best animated short at Warsaw festival

October 18, 2020 - 18:23

TEHRAN – “The White Whale” by Iranian director Amir-Hossein Mehran won the award for best animated short at the 12th Warsaw Film Festival, which took place in the Polish capital from October 9 to 18, the organizers announced on Saturday. 

The animation tells the story of a man who has lost his close friends in an air attack during the war a long time ago. After 30 years, he is looking for their remains in a big river while a White Whale is the only sign he has.

The festival’s grand prix was given to “18 Kilohertz” by Farkhat Sharipov from Kazakhstan.

The best director award went to Martin Sulik for the film “The Man with Hare Ears”, a co-production of Czech and Slovakia,

Actors Bogdan Farkas and Dragos Dumitru received the special jury prize for their performance in Romanian filmmaker Bogdan George Apetri’s drama “Unidentified”. 

Four movies by Iranian filmmakers were competing in the various sections of the festival. 

“The Black Cat” by Karim Mohammad-Amini had its world premiere in the official competition of the event.

The film is about underground rap music in Iran, and the Iranian new generation whose hopes and dreams have been changed due to the prevalence of the internet and social networks.

Directed by Masud Bakhshi, “Yalda, a Night for Forgiveness”, a co-production of Iran, Germany, France, Lebanon and Luxemburg, was also screened in this category.

The film is about Maryam, a young woman who has been sentenced to death for murdering her husband, Nasser. Iranian law allows for the victim’s family to forgive her and spare her life, so Maryam’s fate will be decided by Nasser’s daughter, Mona, on the country’s most popular televised reality show. 

In front of millions of viewers during Yalda, the winter solstice celebration, Maryam and Mona discover that forgiveness can be difficult as they relive the past.

The film won a special mention for best screenplay at the 24th Sofia International Film Festival in Bulgaria in July.

“Witness” directed by Ali Asgari was competing in the short competition section. 

The co-production between Iran and France is about a mother who goes to a shopping mall and leaves her young daughter waiting in her car. Helping an elderly woman, she sets a chain of events in motion.

Photo: “The White Whale” by Amir-Hossein Mehran wins at the 12th Warsaw Film Festival. 

RM/MMS/YAW

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