Donald Trump’s travel ban could keep Oscar-nominated Iranian director Asghar Farhadi from attending this year’s Academy Awards ceremony. Farhadi’s The Salesman is up for the Best Foreign Language Film award.
Farhadi’s A Separation won the 2012 Oscar in the same category. The U.K. newspapers The Telegraph and The Independent were among those reporting today that the visa ban will keep Farhadi from attending this year’s Feb. 26 awards.
Trump’s executive order prohibits entry into the United States for 90 days from seven predominantly Muslim countries: Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.
Iranian author Trita Parsi (A Single Roll of the Dice), who leads the National Iranian American Council, tweeted a confirmation of the news. His tweet did not explain from whom he received the confirmation.
But a BBC correspondent in Persia reports that Farhadi’s office has indicated to him that the director faces no “legal obstacle” to visit the U.S., and that the director himself has yet to decide on whether to attend the Oscars.
Deadline reached out to Farhadi’s representatives today and has not received a response.
Earlier this week, The Salesman star Taraneh Alidoosti said she would not attend the Oscars as a protest against Trumps (then-proposed) ban. She called the visa ban “racist.”
In similar news, Iraqi filmmaker Hussein Hassan, director of Reseba – The Dark Wind, withdrew his visa application to attend the North American premiere of his film at the 34th edition of the Miami Film Festival. The fest’s director Jaie Laplante said the festival will screen Reseba – The Dark Wind as scheduled, “but with a deep sense of loss and disappointment.”
“It is essential that roadblocks not be put in place that will prevent artists from the free discussion of their work, and equally essential that the world’s artists are made to feel welcome in the United States,” Laplante said. The 34th Miami Film Festival will take place March 3-12.