Internationally acclaimed Iranian writer, director and producer Tahmineh Milâni graduated in architecture and began her filmmaking career as a script supervisor and assistant director, followed by writing a screenplay for Mohammad Reza Alami’s Love and Death. Renowned for tackling controversial issues, many of Tahmineh’s films explore gender politics and feature strong female protagonists. She wrote and directed her 1989 debut feature film Children of Divorce and went on to make The Legend of Sigh (1991) and What Else is New? (1992). Her works gained momentum in the 1990s, culminating in two films that address the universal issue of women’s rights through a specific focus on women in Iran. With Two Women (1999), she earned international acclaim and a reputation as a feminist activist.

Her next film, The Hidden Half (2001), deals with more personal material from her own past as a left-wing college student. The Tehran Revolutionary Court took exception to her depiction of the events of 1979 in this film and charged her with supporting counter-revolutionaries. She was imprisoned for two weeks and subsequently released after mounting pressure from the international film community and public support from President Khatami. Her film Unwanted Woman (2005) was awarded the triple crown of Best Feature Film, Best Director and Best Screenplay in Taipei’s 51st Asia Pacific Film Festival. Tahmineh’s Superstar, a comedic melodrama about an arrogant actor, enjoyed significant box office success in Iran and was recently released throughout the US.

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