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Sunday , November 18 2018

Academy troubled by possible visa ban of Oscar nominee – Bollywood director attacked on set by protesters

This image released by Lionsgate shows Ryan Gosling in a scene from ‘La La Land’. Gosling was nominated for an Oscar for best actor in a leading role on Jan 24, for his work in the film. The 89th Academy Awards will take place on Feb 26. (AP)

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif, Jan 29, (Agencies): The motion picture academy calls “extremely troubling,” the possible visa ban of Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, whose feature film “The Salesman” is nominated for a best foreign language Oscar.

In a statement released Saturday, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences expressed concern that Farhadi and his cast and crew may not be permitted to attend next month’s Oscar ceremony in Los Angeles following President Trump’s plan to temporarily suspend issuing visas for people from Iran and six other Muslim countries.

Farhadi has not commented on his travel plans, but on Friday, the president of the National Iranian American Council, Trita Parsi, tweeted: “Confirmed: Iran’s Asghar Farhadi won’t be let into the US to attend Oscar’s.”

On Thursday, Iranian actress Taraneh Alidoosti, star of the “The Salesman,” tweeted she would boycott the Oscars — whether allowed to attend or not — in protest of Trump’s immigration policies, which she called “racist.”

In its statement Saturday, the academy said, “As supporters of filmmakers — and the human rights of all people — around the globe, we find it extremely troubling that Asghar Farhadi, the director of the Oscar-winning film from Iran ‘A Separation,’ along with the cast and crew of this year’s Oscar-nominated film ‘The Salesman,’ could be barred from entering the country because of their religion or country of origin.”

An Academy spokesperson issued a statement Saturday in response to reports that Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi, who is nominated for an Oscar this year, would be barred from entering the country for the awards under President Donald Trump’s recently enacted travel ban.

“The Academy celebrates achievement in the art of filmmaking, which seeks to transcend borders and speak to audiences around the world, regardless of national, ethnic, or religious differences,” the statement said. “As supporters of filmmakers — and the human rights of all people — around the globe, we find it extremely troubling that Asghar Farhadi, the director of the Oscar-winning film from Iran ‘A Separation,’ along with the cast and crew of this year’s Oscar-nominated film The Salesman, could be barred from entering the country because of their religion or country of origin.”

Trump signed the executive order on Friday afternoon to suspend entry of refugees to the US for 120 days, and imposed an indefinite ban on refugees from Syria. A 90-day ban was also placed on citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The 2017 Oscars will take place on Feb 26.

Taraneh Alidoosti, the star of Farhadi’s film “The Salesman” spoke up on Twitter Thursday morning after Trump proposed the ban, to announce that she “won’t attend the #AcademyAwards 2017 in protest.”

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NEW DELHI: A Bollywood director has been assaulted on set by a group protesting his new movie “Padmavati”, which they claim distorts historical facts about their clan.

Video shows protesters from a group called the Rajput Karni Sena slapping director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and pulling his hair as filming was taking place at a fort in Jaipur on Friday.

The protesters, who also vandalised the set, accuse Bhansali of twisting historical facts by romantically linking a Rajput queen and a Muslim ruler in the movie, according to local media.

The Rajputs were a Hindu warrior clan that historically ruled over kingdoms in Western India.

The actress playing the Rajput queen, Deepika Padukone, defended the movie on Saturday.

“I can assure you that there is absolutely no distortion of history,” she tweeted.

“Our only endeavour is & has always been to share with the world the story of this courageous & powerful woman in the purest form there is.”

Narayan Singh, who claims to be the local leader of Karni Sena, told the Press Trust of India that the group had warned the filmmaker against presenting “wrong facts”, but he stopped short of claiming responsibility for the attack.

“We gathered there and protested,” he said, adding there were also others watching the filming.

“Someone from the mob slapped him and pulled his hair,” he added.

Local police said five men were initially detained over the incident but had been released.

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