Exiled Iranian director reunites with mom at Kochi film festival
Makhmalbaf, 55, fled Iran in 2005 to escape a crackdown on freedom of expression and film-making after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was elected president in a disputed election. He hopped from country to country along with his wife Marziyeh, two daughters and a son, seeking refuge and making films along the way.
But his mother Esmat, now 83, had to be left behind and until this week, they had met just once in the immediate aftermath of Makhmalbaf leaving Iran. Esmat could not travel to any of the countries where her son and his family was staying as the odds were heavily loaded against them.
“The moment I got the invitation for the Kochi International Film Festival, I called my mother and asked her to apply for an Indian visa,” Makhmalbaf, who now lives in London, told The Sunday Express. “It is difficult for Iranians to get a visa to visit London. The situation was not different in Paris or Tajikistan. Other than India, nowhere else could I invite my mother for a family get-together.”
Makhmalbaf and his family arrived in Kochi last Sunday and Esmat a day later, and the film-maker went to the airport to
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