|  | 

Arts & Culture

Afghan migrant girl; from Tehran subway as peddler to Venice Intl’ Film Fest

Shamila Shirzad, a migrant young girl from Afghanistan who was working in the Tehran subway, has now become a famous movie star after her trip to Venice where he attended the 77th Venice International Film Festival.

She made her presence in the prestigious festival to witness cinema audience and critics acclaim her performance in the “The Sun” also known as Sun Children.

This is a 2020 Iranian drama that focuses on the way children and adults behold the world and also the way their decisions affect the path they are about to take to become grown-ups.

The story also depicts the lack of education and repressive attitudes that deprive these children of some form of childhood. In this film, special attention has been paid to the issue of playing which normally defines a part of childhood.

"The Sun" was very well received by critics at last year's Fajr Film Festival and won several awards such as the best screenplay and best film. It is directed by Majid Majidi and co-written by Nima Javidi and actors such as Shamila Shirzad, Ali Nasirian, Javad Ezzati and Tanaz Tabatabai play star roles in the film.

The 77th Venice International Film Festival that took place at Venice Lido from 2 – 12 September 2020, is the first major international film event to take place physically since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

According to critics, "Sun Children" gives us a prison-break drama that is escaping to nowhere, and a knockabout school comedy gone horribly wrong. The acting is broad, the plot gears often creak, but it has guts and heart and a grubby, street-smart charisma. It was one of the finest films screened in this year’s Venice competition.

In this movie, Shamila Shirzad, the Afghan migrant youth who was working in the Tehran subway has become a famous movie star after traveling to Venice and attending the 77th Venice International Film Festival. However, the 14-year-old leading male actor, Rouhollah Zamanisaghselou, who experienced his first-ever acting role, was not as fortunate as her to attend the festival as the coronavirus put a stop to his moment in the spotlight, after he tested positive and was unable to travel to Italy as planned.

The world-renown director of the film, Majid Majidi, in his remarks during the ceremony, warned that the plight of street children was not limited to one country or region, saying the world could not afford to ignore these kids’ potential.

“These [children] are supposed to be the future of humanity, and what is happening to the future of humanity is disastrous,” Majidi said.

Responsibility goes “beyond the state,” he said.

Shamila Shirzad who nowadays has become so famous and widely known for the successful movie of Majid Majidi and her remarks on the Red Carpet of the festival, which, on behalf of Roohollah Zamani were visited and accepted in the virtual pages and internet.

Just before departing for the festival, lead actor Roohollah Zamani tested positive for coronavirus and could not attend the International Festival.

"I and teenagers like Roohollah Zamani were peddlers in Tehran Subway," said Shamila Shirzad, Thanks for Mr. Majidi and the cinema that brought our dreams back to us ".

"I work in Iran's subway to make a living. I hope one day there will be no child in the world who has to work," Shirzad said.

Source: Islamic Republic News Agency - IRNA


The iran News Gazette is mainly concerned with news and information about the Arab region and also covers international issues. Its main objective is to provide reliable and verified information on the Arab region for publishing on the digital landscape.