“Hafez and Goethe” by director Farshad Fereshteh-Hekmat won the award for best music composed by Sassan Mohebbi. The film also received two honorable mentions for cinematography and animation and special effects.

“Vars” by Javad Vatani also received an honorable mention for its music composed by Christophe Rezai.

Produced at Iran’s Documentary and Experimental Film Center (DEFC), “Hafez and Goethe” explores the impacts of Hafez and Goethe, two of the most prominent poets of all time. 

It takes a closer look at how Hafez, a Persian poet writing in the 14th century, came to have a strong impact and influence on Goethe, a German poet writing in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Hafez’s influence is best explored through Goethe’s invaluable collection of poems called “West-Eastern Diwan.” This collection can be seen as an early example of the blending of Western and Eastern cultures in art.

“Vars” is about Veresk Bridge, an over 80-year-old bridge in northern Iran, which played a key role during World War II as it was used by the Allies to deliver aid to the Soviets in their fight against Hitler.

“Neandertal: The Mystery of the Bruniquel Cave” directed by Luc-Henri Fage from France was named the best film of the festival.

“First Horse Warriors”, a co-production between Canada and U.S. by Niobe Thompson won the award for best narration.

The award for best cinematography went to “Versailles Rediscovered: The Sun King’s Vanished Palace” by Marc Jampolsky from France.

Due to complications from the COVID-19 outbreak in Oregon, the festival’s playlist was available from May 13 to help viewers around the world see the films selected for screening.

The festival intended to showcase the wonderful diversity of human cultures past and present in the exploration of our place in history and in our world, as well as to promote the genre and the makers of films and video productions about cultural heritage.