Asghar Farhadi is an Iranian director born in 1972. He first studied theater. He obtained an undergraduate degree in dramatic arts and a master’s degree in theatrical directing from Tehran University and Tarbiat Modarres University. He then directed short films before writing theater plays and scripts for the Iranian television. He then directed TV documentary shows such as the popular Tale of a City and collaborated on the screenplay of the film Low Heights by Ebrahim Hatamikia. Dancing in the Dust is his first feature film.
He then directed his second film Beautiful City which was extremely well received by international critics. His third production Fireworks Wednesday won the Hugo d’Or at the Chicago International Film Festival in 2006. He received the Silver Bear for Best Director in Berlin in 2009 for About Elly. In 2011, Farhadi returned to the Berlinale to present A Separation. The film won the Golden Bear and the Best Actor and Best Actor Awards for the entire cast. He then received in 2012 the Oscar, the Golden Globe and the César for best foreign film. In 2012, he was part of the jury for the 62nd Berlinale, chaired by Mike Leigh. In 2013, he presented his first film in official selection at the Cannes Film Festival, The Past, shot in France and mostly in French with Ali Mossafa, Bérénice Bejo and Tahar Rahim. Bérénice Bejo receives the Best Actress Prize. The Iranian government allows the film to represent Iran at the Oscars. He then returned to Iran and directed The Salesman, an urban drama for which he found his favorite actors Shahab Hosseini, Taraneh Alidoosti and Babak Karimi. The film is presented at the Cannes Film Festival 2016 where it obtains the Best Actor Award for Hosseini and the Best Screenplay Award. The film brought also to Farhadi the second Oscar of his career.
Building on this international success, he directed Everybody Knows in Spain, carried by the star couple Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem. This psychological thriller is presented in competition at the 71st Cannes Film Festival and is chosen as the opening film.
His latest feature film A Hero is presented in competition at the Cannes Film Festival in 2021 and receives the prestigious Grand Jury Prize.