Announcing the 9th Annual Farhang Short Film Festival

Farhang Foundation

Announcing The 9th Annual Farhang Foundation Short Film Festival
Celebrating Iranian Heritage
Submissions period: April 24 2017 through July 24, 2017

2017 FFF Annoucement

LOS ANGELES, APRIL 24, 2017 - Calling on filmmakers worldwide to submit short films visualizing some aspect of Iranian art, culture, and heritage, Farhang Foundation's annual online short film festival offers contestants the opportunity to compete for $10,000 (first prize), $5,000 (second prize), and $3,000 (third prize).

"Since its launch in 2009, the Farhang Short Film Festival has presented over $140,000 in cash prizes to filmmakers from around the world with the mutual passion for Iran and its culture. Each year we are moved by the tremendous array of exceptional films and talented filmmakers who participate in the festival" said Mark Amin, Farhang's Film Festival Committee Chair, and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees. "Once again, we certainly look forward to this year's festival, and what will no doubt be another year of amazing submissions."

The submissions period opens on Monday April 24, 2017 and ends on Monday July 24 2017. The award ceremony, during which the winning submissions will be screened before a live audience, will take place on Saturday September 30, 2017 in collaboration with the The UCLA Herb Albert School of Music at the prestigious Schoenberg Hall. The evening will also include red-carpet arrivals, extensive media coverage, celebrity guests, the participating contestants, and a reception following.

Farhang Foundation is also pleased to announce its esteemed jury panel for this year's festival. The impressive group is comprised of a diverse and talented team of Iranians, each with a unique background in film.

Jury panel includes Homayoun Ershadi, acclaimed Iranian actor and star of Abbas Kiarostami's masterpiece, TASTE OF CHERRY; Soheila Golestani, star of such critically acclaimed films as TODAY and WE HAVE A GUEST and director of the powerful drama TWO; Behtash Sanaeeha, groundbreaking director of RISK OF ACID RAIN the beautiful film about love, loss and friendship; Roya Teymourian, award-winning actress and star of such notable films as WOMEN'S PRISON and the arresting and emotional drama HADJI SHA; and Mark Amin, CEO of Sobini Films and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Farhang Foundation and Farhang's film festival Committee Chair.

"We certainly feel so privileged to once again have such an acclaimed and talented jury panel presiding over this year's film festival," said Mark Amin. "The festival has now grown to be one of the major annual international film festivals dedicated to Iranian films, and the only festival in the world dedicated to Iranian Shorts. The unique insight of such an expert and diverse jury panel is essential in examining the the submissions, and we are grateful to have our talented jury participate in this year's festival."

Submissions are to be less than 9 minutes in length, and can be of any genre or style, visualizing an aspect of Iranian art, history, culture, crafts, geography, cuisine, or lifestyle that will inspire and spark the audience's interest in learning more about Iranian culture. In keeping with the spirit of Farhang Foundation - a non-religious and non-political organization - it is advised that submissions should refrain from endorsing or opposing any religious or political position.

All entries will be judged for creativity, quality, and originality by the esteemed jury panel. Views expressed by the filmmakers do not represent those of Farhang Foundation or its Board Members and Management.

For more information, including submission guidelines, deadlines, and past winners, visit the official Festival website at

About the Jury
Mark Amin

Mark Amin is currently the CEO of Sobini Films, a motion picture production and financing company. Through Sobini Films, Amin has produced a diverse slate of feature films, including The Prince & Me and Peaceful Warrior. Recent films include Eliza Graves, starring Michael Caine, Ben Kingsley, Kate Beckinsale and Jim Sturgess, based on a short story by Edgar Allen Poe. Girl Most Likely is his most recent film released theatrically during the summer of 2013. Mr. Amin served as Vice Chairman and member of the board of directors of Lionsgate Entertainment from 2000 to 2009. Prior to his work with Lionsgate and Sobini, Amin founded Trimark Holdings, Inc. and served as the company's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Under Amin's leadership, Trimark soon developed into one of the entertainment industry's leading independent production and distribution companies. Amin's past credits include the critically acclaimed Eve's Bayou and Frida, which was nominated for five Oscars and won two. In addition to film production, he is actively involved in the acquisition and development of pistachio and almond orchards in central California, with more than 8,000 acres under management. Mr. Amin holds a BA degree in Economics from the University of Kansas and an MBA from UCLA.

Homayoun Ershadi

Born in Isfahan Iran in 1947, Mr. Ershadi is an acclaimed Iranian actor who made his screen debut in the leading role of Abbas Kiarostami's masterpiece, TASTE OF CHERRY in 1997. Ershadi has also starred in such notable films as the Academy Award winning ZERO DARK THIRTY (2012) by Kathryn Bigelow and A MOST WANTED MAN opposite the late Philip Seymour Hoffman. Other notable works includes the role of Baba in the critically acclaimed drama THE KITE RUNNER and Aspasius in Alejandro Amenábar's AGORA. Ershadi studied architecture in Italy and worked many years as an architect before being discovered by Abbas Kiarostami. Mr. Ershadi is currently working on several projects both in Iran and outside of Iran including ENZEVA by Morteza Ali Abbasmirzaee and LINA by Ramin Rasouli and DEAD END OF TRUST by Hamid Kaviani.

Soheila Golestani

Soheila Golestani, was born in Tehran in 1980 and received her Bachelor of Art degree in theater (Cinema and Theater Faculty from the Art) University of Tehran. She starred in such films as HALF MINE, HALF YOURS (2006) by Vahid Nikkhah, 40 YEARS OLD by Alireza Raisian, and WE HAVE A GUEST by Mohammad Mehdi Asgarpour, for which she received the award for Best Supporting Actress at the 32nd International Fadjr Film Festival. Her starring role in the thriller, TODAY by Reza Mirkarimi garnered much critical acclaim, and was screened at major international film festivals throughout the world. In 2014 Ms. Golestani made her directorial debut with the multilayered drama TWO, starring Parviz Parastui and Mahtab Nasirpour. Her latest project includes IF YOU GO AWAY, the award winning virtual reality short film about war refugees.

Behtash Sanaeeha

Born in Shiraz, Iran in 1980, Behtash Sanaeeha has a BA in civil engineering, and was pursuing his Masters in architecture when he left school in order to dedicate himself to his true passion of filmmaking. He started his career making short films, documentaries and commercials, and he also wrote and directed two animated television series and a made for television feature film. However, it was his feature directorial debut in 2015's RISK OF ACID RAIN which brought him international acclaim. The film was selected by many international festivals throughout the world and garnered him multiple awards and nominations, including best screenplay at the 33rd Fajr Film Festival. His latest feature film, THE INVINCIBLE DIPLOMACY OF MR. NADERI is a documentary that one best picture at the 2017 Iran Documentary Film Festival.

Roya Teymourian

Delara "Roya" Teymourian was born in 1959 in Tehran where she studied acting and directing at the College of Dramatic Arts and started her early career in theater at the age of 21. It was her performance in the 1988 television series RA'ANA by Davood Mirbagheri, which truly showcased her talents as an actress. She then started her film career in the feature film YEARNING VISIT by Moharram Zaynalzadeh, and has performed in 27 films, 20 television programs and 25 theater productions which resulted in multiple awards and nominations to date, including two awards for Best Actress at the 6th Celebration of Iranian House of Cinema, as well as the Independent Women Film Festival for her role in WOMEN'S PRISON. Ms. Teymourian is best known for her leading roles in such films as SANTOORI, CAFÉ SETAREH, THE WILLOW TREE, SNOW, TIK, and THE MUSIC MAN. Most recently she starred in a role of a lifetime in the groundbreaking and controversial film, HADJI SHA by Zamani Esmati, which garnered her a best actress nomination at the Fajr Film Festival. She has been married to Masoud Raygany since 2003 and has two daughters Dorna and Donya Madani from her previous marriage./p>


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About Farhang Foundation

Farhang Foundation is a non-religious, non-political and not-for-profit foundation established in 2008 to celebrate and promote Iranian art and culture for the benefit of the community at large. The foundation supports a broad range of academic activities in Southern California by funding university programs, publications and conferences. The foundation also supports diverse cultural programs such as the celebration of Nowruz, Shabe-Yalda, Mehregan, theater and dance performances, film screenings and poetry readings in Southern California. And, in cooperation with various cultural and academic institutions, Farhang Foundation funds major programs and exhibitions about Iran and its culture. However, the content, viewpoints or biases expressed by individual artists, academics, institutions or events supported by the foundation belong solely to each individual party and do not necessarily reflect the views of Farhang Foundation.