Dariush Mehrjui: Making the Cow


Members of the film crew of The Cow: Dariush Mehrjui (director), Ezzatollah Entezami, Ali Nassirian, Jamshid Mashayekhi, Jafar Vali, Ezzatollah Ramezanifar, Reza Fazeli, (Actors), Zari Khalaj (Editor), Hormoz Farhat (Composer)

And Film Critics: Pierre-Henri Deleau (France), Callisto Cosulich (Italy), Godfrey Cheshire and Richard Pena (USA), Mohammad Haghighat, Fereydoun Hoveyda, Esmail Nooriala and Amir Taheri (Iran)

Camera: Shahryar Assadi, Arash Adibzadeh, Foroud Avazpour, Bjarne Blume, Marco Carraro, Serge Hamad, Nezam Kiaie, Bahman Maghsoudlou, Mahmoud Oskoui, Paolo Poce, Ali Vafa

Editor: Haleh Javanshir & Graphic Artist

Music: Fereydoun Shahbazian, Hormoz Farhat, Andrei Vonavi

Consultant: Esmail Nooriala

Executive Producer: Bijan Maghsoudlou, Behzad Maghsoudlou, Bahman Maghsoudlou

Writer/Director/Producer: Bahman Maghsoudlou

Iran/USA, Copyright IFVC, 2022

Synopsis: This feature documentary examines the making of The Cow (1968), smuggled to Venice, and won FIPRESCI Prize (1971), and how it became one of the major films of the Iranian New Wave, and its impact on both Iranian films before and after the 1979 revolution and the larger global cinematic landscape.

This documentary was shot by twelve different cinematographers in 8 cities (Tehran, Rome, London, Paris, Toronto, New York, Denver, Washington DC) in six countries from 2002 to 2022.

USA, Documentary, Color and B/W, 85 Minutes, Farsi & English with English Subtitles, International Film & Video Center, Copyright, 2022

Festival: MESA Film Fest ,Dec 2022

B: The Cow (1968)

Synopsis of The Cow: Mashadi Hassan is infatuated with his cow, the only one in the village. When the caw unexpectedly dies, he becomes so deranged that he begins to believe that he has become the cow. His friends decide to take him to the nearby city to be seen by a doctor. On the way, he escapes, falls into a crevice, and dies.

Awards: The Cow (Gav-1069), a well-known Iranian film directed by Dariush Mehrjui, is considered by most critics to be the first film of the Iranian New Wave.

– Awarded the Best Screenplay prize at the second Iranian National Film Festival Sepas, 1970.

– First screened internationally at Fortnight Directors at the Cannes Film Festival in 1971 and then the 32nd Venice Film Festival of the same year, receiving the FIPRESCI Prize.

– Awarded the Best Actor prize at the Chicago International Film Festival 1971 for the performance by Ezzatollah Entezami (Masht Hasan).

-Fifteen London Film Festival, 1971

OCIC Award-Recommendation-Forum of New Film, 22nd Berlin International Film Festival, 1972

Best Film Award, La Rochelle Film Festival, 1994

Further recognition:

– Selected as one of the best films by Iranian film Critics three times, in 1972, 1988 and 1999.

Splendor Films in France distributed a digitally restored version of The Cow in that country in 2014.

– Included in 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die, edited by Steven Jay Schneider, and published by Barron’s in 2005 and 2020.

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