Noor Film Festival 2008 Photos

Saye Yabandeh

Hey, remember when we said we were going to the Noor Film Festival red carpet thingy? No? Well, we went. And Amy Malek – Pars Arts contributor, anthropology genius, NGO-starter, and fearless press photographer extraordinaire – took some amazing photos that you should definitely not miss. Seriously, it was elbows-out in this press pit and Amy spent a solid couple of hours wedged between some people from Persian satellite TV and a disgruntled yet chatty guy from one of the wire services. We love you, Amy.

Above, she managed to capture the Iranian Paris Hilton (accidentally?) flashing her dog’s nether regions. Persian Paris’s real name is Saye Yabandeh, and she’s an actress, and we think she kinda rocks for bringing her puppy to the LAX Hilton. And her pet’s coloring matches her leopard-print dress. So Hollywood!

Check out the rest of the photos, which include guy-who-plays-Dwight-Schrute Rainn Wilson, Iranian stage actress Mary Apick, and the best male Persian pop star of any of our lifetimes (Andy, duh), among others, in the full Noor Film Festival 2008 red carpet photo album.

So besides the pictures… our favorite thing of the night was the clip below. We say keep your eyes and ears open for this doc about prejudice and perception, Ain’t She Sweet, by Bita Haidarian:

2008 Noor Film Festival (and UCLA)

Noor Film Festival

The opening ceremony and red carpet good times for the 2008 Noor Film Festival are this Sunday in Los Angeles, kicking off a couple weeks of Iranian and Middle Eastern films. Pars Arts will be there, hopefully getting some photos and good quotes, so stay tuned.

I am really crossing my fingers that celebrity judge Rainn Wilson will be present, in character as Dwight Schrute, and also hoping to see his fellow celebrity judge, the amazingly illustrious Iranian-in-America director Reza Badiyi. Check out Bebin TV’s interview with Badiyi to see why he rocks so hard.

But enough about that. Here’s the full schedule of movies being screened in Beverly Hills. In its second year, Noor’s tagline is “Celebrating Women.” But I’m most excited about Nomads of Iran, Saied Atoofi’s documentary that explores the lives of two Iranian nomadic tribes. From Noor’s website, here’s a description:

This documentary is a rare glimpse of two major nomadic tribes of Iran, Quashquees and Bakhtiaris. Nomads talk about their lives, traditions, weddings, ways of making decisions for their families and tribes, and occasionally complement the beautiful scenery of their surroundings with singing nomadic songs.

This documentary also explores the changes of lives of nomads who preferred to stay put permanently and built a new way of life in small towns. Nomad-settlers explain how settlement has changed the very fabric of their family, way of thinking, and being in the world.

Unfortunately, I can’t find a trailer or clips for this film on YouTube (please leave a comment if you find anything). For Iranians in Colorado, the film is also being shown at the Colorado Springs Indie Spirit Film Festival at the end of the month.

Iranian film fans in LA should also know that the 18th Annual Iranian Film Festival is in progress now. Go, go, go, because it’s over on April 20th and then you have to wait another year again. Here’s a full schedule. The lineup is amazing… and I like that they have one night devoted to Iranian diaspora films (April 18). Buy your tickets from UCLA.