Fifth film from the acclaimed Persian filmmaker Bahman Ghobadi opened the 2009 Un Certain Regard and had North American premiere at AFI Fest
Theatrical release set for April 16, 2010 in New York
and April 23, 2010 in Los Angeles with an accompanying nationwide VOD release
New York (NY) (February XX, 2009) – IFC Films, the leading American distributor of independent and foreign films, announced today it has acquired U.S. rights to the Iranian film sensation NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS, an exuberant look at Tehran’s youth and underground music scene and their unapologetic desire for creative expression in the face of an oppressive government. The fifth film from the award-winning filmmaker Bahman Ghobadi, NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS was the opening night film of the Un Certain Regard section of the 2009 Cannes Film Festival where it won a Special Jury Prize.
NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS marks a reunion for Bahman Ghobadi with IFC Films who previously released his acclaimed 2004 feature TURTLES CAN FLY. The film was written by Ghobadi, Roxana Saberi, Hosein M. Abkenar. Saberi is the Iranian-American journalist who was accused of spying last spring and held in custody for several months.
NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS had its North American premiere at the AFI Fest in Los Angeles in November of last year, and will also be a special presentation at the upcoming SXSW Film Festival in March. The film will also be shown in April at the Film Society of Lincoln Center as the centerpiece screening of a Bahman Ghobadi retrospective. The retrospective takes place April 14 and 15 and includes all his feature films (A Time for Drunken Horses, Marooned in Iraq, Turtles Can Fly and Half Moon). Please visit www.filmlinc.com for complete information.
The deal for NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS was negotiated by Arianna Bocco, IFC Films VP of Acquisitions and Co-Productions, with Carole Baraton of Wild Bunch.
IFC Films will release NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS in 2010 via its IFC in Theaters platform which brings critically-acclaimed independent movies to on-demand viewers at home the same day they premiere in theaters.
NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS journeys into the underground music scene of Tehran where the two protagonists, Negar and Ashkan are trying to get their indie rock band, Take it Easy Hospital, together. The pop duo tirelessly meets other local bands and musicians who are in constant struggle and have to hide in order to play because western music is forbidden and deemed immoral by the current Iran regime. A window into the rich cultural scene of contemporary Tehran, the film invites the viewer to discover new, real music of current day Iran that is being created secretly in Tehran including Hip-hop, rock, metal, blues, traditional, electronic and folk. Shot in secret and featuring extraordinary performances by real underground musicians (it’s estimated there are 2,000 illegal bands in Tehran), NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS is both a serenade to and an indictment of Ghobadi’s former hometown and a vital celebration of an entire generation of Iranians striving towards personal and creative freedom.
Jonathan Sehring, President of IFC Entertainment commented, “We are absolutely thrilled to be back in business with Bahman Ghobadi and Wild Bunch. He’s one of the world’s most distinct voices and he’s made an incredibly entertaining, fascinating and life-affirming film. We think this is going to be a great follow-up to our success with TURTLES CAN FLY.”
The soundtrack to NO ONE KNOWS ABOUT PERSIAN CATS (a best-seller in Europe) will be released in the U.S. on April 13 through Milan Records.
About the Filmmaker
Bahman Ghobadi is the leading Kurdish director from Iran. Born in 1969, he served as Abbas Kiarastami’s assistant director on THE WIND WILL CARRY US. His documentary LIFE IN FOG rocketed him to fame. His debut feature A TIME FOR DRUNKEN HORSES won the Camera d’Or in Cannes in 1999. In 2002, MAROONED IN IRAQ won the Golden Plaque from the Chicago International Film Festival. TURTLES CAN FLY won the Glass Bear and Peace Film Award at the 2004 Berlin International Film Festival and the Golden Shell at the San Sebastian Film Festival. HALF MOON also won the Golden Shell in Sebastian in 2006.