Asghar Farhadi, the Iranian director of The Salesman, finally collected his Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film, at Cannes. Farhadi could not attend the Oscar ceremony earlier this year, due to the ‘Muslim Ban’ executive order by Donald Trump. The ban prevented citizens of 7 muslim majority countries – including Iran – from travelling to the United States of America.
Entertainment Weekly reports that a representative of the Academy travelled to Cannes, to personally hand over the gold statuette to Asghar Farhadi and producer Alexandre Mallet-Guy. Accepting the award, Farhadi praised Cannes as a “place where cultures speak to one another.”
The award for Best Foreign Language film is not given to an individual, but to the country that submitted the winning film, however the director will collect the award on behalf of the nation. Since Farhadi could not attend the ceremony, the award was picked up by Iranian-American astronauts and space scientists, Anousheh Ansari and Firouz Naderi.
The Salesman had premiered at the Cannes competition in 2016, before it was released around the world. Farhadi was invited to open the festival this year.