Festival Director Reza Mirkarimi broke the news at a presser in Tehran on Wednesday. The legendary film maker is best known for the hit films Platoon, Scarface, Born on the Fourth of July and Natural Born Killers.
Oliver Stone, by name of William Oliver Stone, (born September 15, 1946) is known for his ambitious and often controversial movies. Many of Stone’s films focus on controversial American political issues during the late 20th century, and as such were considered contentious at the times of their releases. His films are filled with a variety of film angles and styles; he pushes his actors to give Oscar-worthy performances, and despite his failures, has always returned to success.
Stone, the son of a wealthy stockbroker, was raised in New York City. He briefly studied at Yale University before dropping out to teach English in South Vietnam. Stone lived in Mexico for a year and again attended Yale for a short period. In 1967, during the Vietnam War, he enlisted in the U.S. Army. Stone then enrolled in film school at New York University (B.A., 1971), studying under director Martin Scorsese.
Stone was deeply affected by his war experiences, and his student films, such as Last Year in Viet Nam (1971), dealt directly with the consequences of the Vietnam conflict. As a director, Stone achieved prominence as director/writer of the war drama Platoon (1986), for which Stone won the Academy Award for Best Director; the film was awarded Best Picture. Platoon was the first in a trilogy of films based on the Vietnam War, in which Stone served as an infantry soldier. He continued the series with Born on the Fourth of July (1989)—for which Stone won his second Best Director Oscar—and Heaven & Earth (1993).
After graduating, he directed the horror movies Seizure! (1974) and The Hand (1981). Stone also began experimenting with screenwriting, and he won an Academy Award for best adapted screenplay for Midnight Express (1978), which was based on the true story of a man brutally abused while imprisoned for drug smuggling in Turkey. Stone devoted much of the early 1980s to writing screenplays, and also wrote the acclaimed gangster movie Scarface (1983).
Stone’s some other notable works include the Salvadoran Civil War-based drama Salvador (1986); the financial drama Wall Street (1987) and its 2010 sequel Money Never Sleeps; the Jim Morrison biopic The Doors (1991); and a trilogy of films based on the American Presidency—JFK (1991; a polarizing investigation of the circumstances surrounding the assassination of Pres. John F. Kennedy), Nixon (1995; a measured take on the life of the U.S. president) and W. (2008; his biopic of Pres. George W. Bush, drew fire from both extremes of the political spectrum for its refusal to pass definitive judgment, positive or negative, on its subject). His latest film is Snowden (2016).
Besides narrative films, Stone made two documentaries about Latin American politics: Comandante (2003), about Cuban Fidel Castro, and South of the Border (2009), which focused on several other left-wing leaders, notably Venezuelan Pres. Hugo Chávez. With Peter Kuznick, he also created Oliver Stone’s Untold History of the United States (2012), a 10-part television documentary (and accompanying book) that took an unorthodox look at the preceding century of American political history.
Stone’s series of interviews with Russian president Vladimir Putin over the span of two years was released as The Putin Interviews, a four-night television event on Showtime on June 12, 2017. The segments have been described as an advocacy project toward President Putin. On June 13, Stone and Prof Stephen F Cohen joined John Batchelor in New York to record an hour of commentary on The Putin Interviews. Stone also appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert in a controversial interview about the film.
Presided over by Iranian film writer and director Reza Mirkarimi, the 36th edition of Fajr International Film Festival will be held in Tehran on April 19-27. A host of international A-listers will be attending this year’s event, including legendary Italian actor Franco Nero.