Berlinare film festival stars in a rally to support Iran protests. Feb. 18, 2023

Berlinare film festival stars in a rally to support Iran protests. Feb. 18, 2023

Berlinale Film Stars Show Solidarity With Iran Protests

Saturday, 02/18/2023

Dozens of actors and filmmakers gathered on the Berlinale's red carpet on Saturday to show solidarity with anti-government protesters in Iran.

An exiled Iranian film director predicted the imminent fall of the country's government.

"The regime's time is over," Sepideh Farsi told Reuters on the red carpet. "It's time for change – I think people really grasp that."

Some of those present at the demonstration – including Farsi, whose animation film "The Siren" opened on Thursday, and the award-winning director Farzad Pak – held up placards emblazoned with the Kurdish revolutionary slogan "Jin, Jîyan, Azadî" (Woman, Life, Freedom).

Others made victory signs or chanted the slogan as they punched the air with their hands.

The demonstration in Berlin came after protests flared up overnight on Thursday in Iran, with streets in a number of cities filling with people demanding the overthrow of the Islamic Republic.

The Berlinale has this year boycotted Iranian film institutions but is showing a number of films by independent directors from the country, with Iran's quest for freedom one of this year's main themes.

Banning Iranian institutions sent "a very strong signal," Farsi added. "Iranian institutions have always been here; their absence opens the place for other independent institutions."

The demonstration followed a panel discussion exploring the role of the arts in the protests, during which Pak described the government as a "totalitarian regime where self expression is not allowed".

Iranian director Jafar Panahi, who has been critical of the government, was arrested in Iran in July. He was released on bail earlier this month.

Reporting by Reuters

IITV News (12) - DC
IITV News (26) - DC

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