Zar Amir Ebrahimi wins best actor award at Cannes for 'Iranian-Danish' thriller Holy Spider'

Moira Jean Sullivan

Zar Amir Ebrahimi delivered a powerful statement at the press conference after she was awarded the, best acting award for Holy Spider, one of the most talked about films at the 75th Cannes Film Festival. The actor spoke about how she was forced into exile in 2006 by a smear campaign for an underground video tape where she was proclaimed to be an actor. She said she had been "saved by cinema".

In Holy Spider she plays a journalist fighting for social justice for slain sex workers. "This film is about women, it's about their bodies, it's a movie full of faces, hair, hands, feet, breasts, sex -- everything that is impossible to show in Iran".

The film is inspired by the true story of a working class man who killed prostitutes in the early 2000s and became known as the "Spider Killer". "Holy Spider" suggests there was little official pressure to catch the murderer, who ends up a hero among the religious right. "The movie is not only about a serial killer ... it's about a serial killer society...".

In response to the critical acclaim for the film director, Ali Abbasi stated that "Any serious movie that manages to get made in the Islamic Republic "is a miracle".

The film is an Iranian-Danish co-production.


© 2022 - Moira Sulliva - Air Date:05/29/22
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