Announcing The 10th Annual Farhang Foundation Short Film Festival

April 26, 2018
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Announcing The 10th Annual Farhang Foundation Short Film Festival

Celebrating Iranian Heritage

Submissions period: April 26 2018 through July 24, 2018

2018 0426 FFF Open

LOS ANGELES, APRIL 26, 2018 - 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 prestigious recognition and a $10,000 (first prize), $5,000 (second prize), and $3,000 (third prize).

Since its launch in 2008, the Farhang Short Film Festival has presented over $160,000 in cash prizes to filmmakers from around the world with the mutual passion for Iran and its culture. "Each year the transcending power of cinema is demonstrated in the array of exceptional works that are submitted by the talented group of filmmakers participating from around the world" said Mark Amin, Farhang's Film Festival Committee Chair and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees. "Ten years ago when we established this film festival focused on Iranian culturally themed films, we wanted to provide a democratic platform for filmmakers worldwide to showcase their exceptional works and to be recognized for their efforts in the field of filmmaking, and it has been a tremendous experience for us to witness the growth and impact this festival has had on so many filmmakers worldwide."

BH CoatofArms logoThe Festival's submission period opens on April 26, 2018 and ends on July 24 2018. The award ceremony, during which the top six finalist will be screened and top three awards will be presented before a live audience, will take place on Saturday September 29, 2018 at the festival's new home at the prestigious Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, and generously sponsored by the City of Beverly Hills. Special thanks go to the Beverly Hills City Council for their support of this cultural program, and for inviting the festival to the beautiful city of Beverly Hills for this milestone 10th year anniversary celebration. The evening will also include red-carpet arrivals, extensive media coverage, celebrity guests, the participating contestants, and a reception following.

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The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts

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 Cinema.

The 2018 jury panel includes living legend, actor, filmmaker and producer Parviz Sayyad; veteran actress of stage, screen and television Gohar Kheirandish; award winning actress and activist Mary Apick, filmmaker and Abbas Kiarostami collaborator, Adel Yaraghi, and jury chair Mark Amin, CEO of Sobini Films and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Farhang Foundation.

"We are honored to once again have such a diverse and acclaimed jury panel presiding over this year's festival" said Mark Amin. "The participation of such accomplished and talented individuals is essential in highlighting the importance of this festival and we are certainly grateful for their participation and dedication to this year's submission review process."

Submissions should be under 15 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. All submissions not in English must include English subtitles. In keeping with the spirit of Farhang Foundation - a nonreligious and nonpolitical organization - it is advised that submissions should refrain from endorsing or opposing any religious or political position. Full details of the submission rules can be viewed by visiting our Terms and Conditions page.

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



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.


Mary Apick began her career as a child star in Iran. One of her earliest successes was the television program "Octopus," a long running show on National Iranian Television where Mary performed as a teen star in political and satirical skits weekly. Going on to star in countless television shows, feature films and plays, Ms. Apick became one of the most popular stars in Iran before the 1979 revolution. She was the first actress in the Iranian motion picture history to win the Moscow International Film Festival award for Best Actress for her performance in "Dead End." Ms. Apick has starred in critically acclaimed and award winning films including, "The Mission," "Checkpoint," and "Price For Freedom." She has also co-starred in television productions such as the NBC miniseries "On Wings of Eagles" and produced the MGM release, "Mind Games." Among her many awards, she recently received the prestigious ARPA International Film Festival Foundation Award for her Humanitarian efforts using the theater to mirror the true voices and the stories of the women of the Middle East. She also worked with Academy Award Winners Robert Redford, Sydney Pollack and Edward James Olmos. She is currently producing and starring in the animated feature film "Nowruz."


Award winning actress and star of screen, stage and television, Gohar Kheiranish was Born in Shiraz, Iran and received a bachelor's degree in theater arts form Tehran University. She started her career in theater performing in numerous productions for the Tehran City Theater which then led her to star in numerous television and film productions. She has performed in over 60 feature films and is perhaps best known for her performance in director Dariush Mehrjui's 1999 classic film LADY. She has worked with such other notable filmmakers as Tahmineh Milani, Khosro Masoumi and Ebrahim Hatamikia.


Born in Lahijan, Iran in 1939, Sayyad started his legendary career in television in 1960, after the formation of Iran's National Television station, where Sayyad starred and produced shows along with such other notable performers as Apick Youssefian, Mary Apick and Parviz Kardan. He is perhaps best known for his iconic comedic character "Samad" who quickly became an Iranian cultural phenomenon. He also starred in and produced such notable television shows as "Octopus" and "Uncle Napoleon." He has written, directed and starred in dozens of award winning feature films as well as producing the international masterpiece "Still Life" by director Sohram Shahid-Saless. Before the Islamic revolution, he was one of the leading figures of the Iranian popular cinema, and in 1974, he co-founded The New Film Group, a loose confederation of New Wave filmmakers, and used the money from his commercial successes to help finance the works of young and talented directors. Sayyad, now working in Los Angeles directing Persian-language stage plays and TV shows for the large Iranian immigrant community.


Adel Yaraghi is an award-winning filmmaker and photographer born in 1968. He holds a B.A. and MFA in film production from Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. He started his film career as an assistant editor in Concord-New Horizons, a Roger Corman company. He continues working as a filmmaker, screenwriter, actor and photographer. His first feature film "Meeting Leila" (2012) starring the amazing Leila Hatami and his second feature film "Finals" (2016) starred the award winning Shahab Hosseini, were both co-written by the late-great Abbas Kiarostami. Both films were screened at numerous international film festivals including Chicago, Sao Paulo and Tashkent international film festivals. "Meeting Leila" won best first film in Iran and best director at the Tashkent Film Festival.

Farhang logo

Farhang Foundation is a nonreligious, nonpolitical 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 celebrations of Nowruz and Mehregan, theater, 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.