Asghar Farhadi, arguably Iran’s greatest living filmmaker, is one of the few directors who has won Best International Feature Film twice: the first time for 2011’s masterpiece A Separation, and again in 2016 for The Salesman. He’ll go for the trifecta with A Hero, which has already been selected as Iran’s entry for the 94th Academy Awards.
A Hero, which won the Grand Prix at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, is about a man named Rahim (Amir Jadidi) who is in prison because of an unpaid debt. “During a two-day leave, he tries to convince his creditor (Mohsen Tanabandeh) to withdraw his complaint against the payment of part of the sum. But things don’t go as planned,” reads the official plot summary.
“I don’t perceive being local and being universal as opposites,” Farhadi told Deadline about his film’s theme being universal. “You can be extremely local and addressing only very specific local issues and being understandable and interesting for anyone from any other culture, as you can have very universal and general intentions and ambitions and not being understood by the closest person to you.”
A Hero, which also stars Fereshteh Sadrorafaii, Sahar Goldoust, Maryam Shahdaie, Sarina Farhadi, and Saleh Karimai, comes out in theaters on January 7, 2022, and Amazon Prime Video on January 21.