Date of Birth:
29 May 1957, Tehran, Iran
Mohsen Makhmalbaf is known as one of the most influential filmmakers and founders of the new wave of Iranian cinema in the world today.
Many of his films like Salam Cinema, A Moment Of Innocence, Gabbeh, Kandahar and The President have been widely well received across the globe and have brought him over 50 international awards from the prestigious film festivals like Cannes, Venice, Locarno... His film Kandahar has been chosen as one of the top 100 best movies of history of cinema by Times Magazine.
His fame as the most prominent filmmaker of Iran made him the subject of an identity theft by someone who wished to become a filmmaker. This incident turned to a famous film called Close up by Abbas Kiarostami.
Makhmalbaf has also taught his three children about the art of cinema. His older daughter Samira holds the record for the youngest filmmaker who have been selected for the official section of Cannes at the age of 17 with her first debut titled The Apple. Samira has also won the Grand Jury Prize of Cannes twice with her second and and third film titled The Blackboards and At Five In The Afternoon. Hana, Makhmalbaf's younger daughter, won the Crystal Bear of Berlin and the Grand Jury Prize of San Sebastian Film Festival with her first feature film.
At the age of 17 as a political activist Mohsen was shot by the police and spent 5 years in prison as a political prisoner. His fight and human right activities against dictatorship in Iran has continued till today. With his film Afghan Alphabet he managed to change a law in Iran which resulted in opening the door of schools and universities for education of over half million Afghan children refugee in his country. Makhmalbaf, the prestigious Manhae Peace Award winner, had also established his own NGO in Iran in which he executed 82 different human right projects for helping women and children of Afghanistan.
Since 2009, all 40 films of Makhmalbaf family alongside Mohsen's 30 published book are banned in his homeland. The Iranian government has also levied a ban on Makhmalbaf's name in the media. In 2013, the Iranian government also removed over 120 international awards of Makhmalbaf family from the museum of cinema in Iran.