Asgarpur and four other members of the jury will judge 11 entries in the international competition of the festival, which opened on Sunday with a screening “Americatsi”, a co-production between Armenia and the U.S. directed by Michael Goorjian.
Terry George from the USA, Orwa Nyrabia from the Netherlands, Florian Hoffmann from Germany and Nora Martirosyan from France are the other members of the jury.
Asgarpur graduated from the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting University. He started his career in 1987 by making several short films.
He made his debut feature film in 1991. He served as head of several organizations, including the Farabi Cinema Foundation and Iranian Alliance of Motion Picture Guilds.
He is currently the vice president of FIAPF – International Federation of Film Producers Association and the managing director of the Iranian Artists Forum.
The Yerevan festival has selected several Iranian films to screen in its various sections.
“The Apple Day” directed by Mahmud Ghaffari will be showcased in the Regional Panorama section.
In this film, a first-grade primary school teacher in a poor suburb of Tehran assigns a letter to each student and asks them to bring items starting with the assigned letter related to their fathers’ jobs.
Mehdi’s father is a fruit seller and he must bring 30 apples (seeb in Farsi) to class on the S Day. However, an unfortunate event immerses the family in a crisis. Saeid, Mehdi’s older brother, has to find a way to overcome this challenge and help Mehdi for “the apple day”.
“Bibijan” by Narges Judaki and Iman Paknahad, “Subtotals” by Mohammadreza Farzad and “Water, Wind, Dust, Bread” by Mehdi Zamanpur Kiasari will be screened in the Apricot Stone section of the festival, which will run until July 17.
Winner of a special mention from the 2021 IDFA jury, “Water, Wind, Dust, Bread” is a highlight of this category.
It tells the story of 11-year-old Abolfazl who lives with his family in an oasis in the Iranian desert. He picks dates, tends to his family’s cows, does his homework, and has fun with his best friend Setayesh.
The camera quietly observes their friendship as they swing between the date palms or climb the windswept rocks around the oasis. Abolfazl’s mother bakes fresh bread, and tourists come to her guesthouse for the serene atmosphere.
But life in the oasis is not entirely idyllic. Although Abolfazl lives with a physical disability, it is Setayesh who faces an even bigger hurdle. She is one of the 40,000 children in Iran who don’t have a birth certificate, and as a result, she can’t go to school.