Poem by Gibran

“True light is that which radiates from within a man. It reveals the secrets of the soul to the soul and lets it rejoice in life, singing in the name of the Spirit. Truth is like the stars, which cannot be seen except beyond the darkness of night. Truth is like all beautiful things in existence; it does not reveal its beauties save to those who have felt the weight of falsehood. Truth is a hidden feeling which teaches us to rejoice in our days and to wish all mankind that rejoicing.” -Kahlil Gibran-

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Santa Barbara International Film Festival 2020

Finding Farideh will have three screenings at the 35th edition of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival:

THURSDAY – 16-Jan – 4:30 PM – LOBERO
FRIDAY – 17-Jan – 4:00 PM – FIESTA 3
SATURDAY – 18-Jan – 8:00 AM – METRO 1

And I will be there for a Q&A afterwards.

Hope to see you there, and for more information and tickets, please see their website, click here.

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Finding Farideh and the Academy Award love affair

So Monday night the news came out and Finding Farideh was not visible on the shortlists for the Oscars 2020.

I was convinced we would be on the list. That though has more to do with my confidence in myself and the film and you know what..

I am fine.. the tension drifted away which feels like a liberation. Iran gave me this honor and that will never be otherwise. That will never change. Ofcourse the list would have been great, though Finding Farideh will always be Iran’s entry for Oscars 2020 with or without the Oscar. That matters to me most.

And yet a lot of people heard or read the title at least and might want to watch it anyway…

We were definitely the underdog with Finding Farideh, from Iran including all difficulties due to the political and economical sanctions, with no budget to begin with and then we did raise money for the PR and screenings… which was awesome.

So THANK YOU to all the crowdfunders for believing in Finding Farideh, I met so many beautiful and creative Iranians in Los Angeles, feeling so blessed to be part of this unique journey.. THANK YOU to the Academy Award members whom I met in LA for their warmth, support and love it was an absolute pleasure to meet you and you made me feel so welcome. THANK YOU to our wonderful team in LA, Nakta, Tatiana, Despina, Azadeh & Alireza, who made sure I was doing fine at all times, thank you for the love and support.
THANK YOU to Kamran and Paula for letting me stay in their place while I was there, I am forever grateful to you for your hospitality.
THANK YOU to all my new friends I made in LA (and at the airport and plane) and yes I will be back in January and hope to see you again while watching the sunset for example..
THANK YOU to all my Uber drivers in LA whom I had such inspirational spiritual conversations with I was very impressed by all of you and you showed me support and interest and opened up about oneself to me.
THANK YOU to the board of cinema in Iran for your belief in Finding Farideh and to be bold and brave enough to send Finding Farideh to the Oscars 2020. Till next time in Iran.
THANK YOU to the entire team of Finding Farideh in Iran and the Netherlands, everyone who worked so hard for this project. I see you and I thank you for all the love you showed me for Finding Farideh. It means the world to me.
THANK YOU God, guardian angels, spirits, ancestors and power animals for being with me in eternity.


Looking forward to going back to Los Angeles in January and attend two famous film festivals for Q & A. Finding Farideh will screen at 4 film festivals around the world in January so stay tuned for more exciting news!

And congratulations to all the filmmakers who did make it to the shortlist.

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Palm Springs International Film Festival 2020

Finding Farideh will screen at Palm Springs International Film Festival 2020
at 9th and 10th of January 2020;


In this deeply moving documentary, Eline Farideh Koning gives filmmakers Kourosh Ataee and Azadeh Moussavi full access to the emotional journey she embarked upon in search of her identity. Currently residing in Amsterdam, Koning’s friends and adoptive family have always had concerns for her safety whenever she would express the desire to visit her birth country of Iran. Now 40, Koning feels ready to travel back to her place of origin, allowing the camera to tag along for the voyage, from the preparation to her time spent there. Koning doesn’t shy away from revealing her feelings in front of the camera, making her anticipation and emotions palpable. Through Koning’s curious eyes, a different side of Iran appears on screen. After co-directing a documentary about the impact of Iran winning the Foreign Language Oscar® in 2012, directing duo Ataee and Moussavi comes full circle with Finding Farideh, Iran’s entry for this year’s Oscars®’ Best International Feature Film, the first non-fiction submission for the country.

In competition for the FIPRESCI Prize

Please see this link: https://www.psfilmfest.org/film-festival-2020/film-finder/finding-farideh 

I will attend the Palm Springs festival and do a Q & A after the screenings. Looking forward to this prestigious film festival in the US!

Hope to see you there!
With love,

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Nog 28 uur te gaan…

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Finding Farideh

adrenaline is flying
from head to toe
from west to east

two more
nights and days
and then we know

revelation shimmers
in the night of dreams
ready to turn into reality

the shortlist will be unveiled
on Monday night
to the world

All for the love of
my Iranian heritage,
Finding Farideh


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Road to the Oscars

Herewith an update written by Azadeh Khatibi from our directors Azadeh Moussavi & Kourosh Ataee in Iran about our crowdfunding campaign, Finding Farideh, road to the Oscars: 

$16,587!!!! We have raised 82% of our $20,000 goal to bring our incredible “Finding Farideh” documentary one step closer to the Oscars!

Thank you so much to each and every one of our supporters who has donated, tweeted, shared, followed and supported this project! We are overwhelmed with gratitude for everyone who has supported “Finding Farideh” so far. It takes a global village to bring a small, vital Iranian documentary to the Academy Awards. 

As independent filmmakers who live in Iran, we often wish our problems- like those of other independent filmmakers in the world- were mostly related to providing the essential requirements of making a film. But the truth is that we live in a world of inequality: a world where the power and ideology of politicians overshadow everything to such a tremendous extent that we do not even have the right to enter the United States during the Oscar campaign. We will never forget this missed opportunity for connection. Furthermore, we will never forget that due to sanctions and lack of an international cargo delivery service between Iran and the United States, in order to send the DVDs and hard drives of “Finding Farideh” to the Academy, we had to put our trust in an old man we’d met at the airport who was heading to the United States. We will never forget that we watched him pile our precious film package atop his diabetes and cholesterol pills to take to New York, and from there send it to Los Angeles. We will never forget that when we find ourselves picked as Iran’s submission for the Academy Awards but with no budget for an Oscar campaign, we launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise money, but the American platform stopped our campaign just after a couple of hours due to sanctions because this project was from Iran. And we will never forget the hardships of these several weeks, right in the vital moments of our Oscar campaign, when we found ourselves in deadly socio-political turmoil in Iran that caused the internet to be shut down for a week, severing our connection to the rest of world.

Nevertheless, we deeply believe that the power of cultural exchange through cinema can open all the doors that are closed by the politicians and the borders they have set. We believe that art and culture hold potential far greater than any sanction or policy. And from the bottom of our hearts, we hope the day comes when we can live in a world where none of these distances and limitations exists.

The campaign is NOT OVER— we still need money for publicity, screenings and outreach, and to pay our publicist who has a great track record of getting films short-listed for nomination. We have 4 more days to get to 100% so please dig deep, and tell your family, your friends, your co-workers and let’s keep the momentum to complete the $20,000 for publicity to the Oscars going!

This is the link: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/finding-farideh-road-to-the-oscars#/



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