‘The Salesman’ was named the Best Foreign Language film at the Oscars on Sunday, but its director Asghar Farhadi was unable to collect the award as a for of protest over Donald Trump’s attempt to ban immigrants from seven countries entering the US.
However, despite not being in attendance, Asghar Farhadi did provide a speech that was read out by Anousheh Ansari, the first Iranian in space, after ‘The Salesman’ was named as the Best Foreign Language film instead of ‘Land Of Mine’, ‘A Man Called Ove’, ‘Tanna’, and ‘Toni Erdmann’.
Farhadi’s speech cited his reason for not attending the Oscars, as he declared, “My absence is out of respect for the people of my country, and those of the other six nations who have been disrespected by the inhumane law that bans entry of immigrants to the US.”
You can check out Asghar Farhadi’s full statement following his Best Foreign Language film victory below.
— ABC News (@ABC) February 27, 2017
Instead of attending the Academy Awards, Asghar Farhadi stayed in Tehran, Iran, while he addressed a 10,000 strong crowd in London that had gathered to watch a screening of ‘The Salesman’ in London’s Trafalgar Square, which was a protest at Donald Trump’s travel ban.
According to the Guardian, Asghar Farhadi remarked, “I am extremely happy that the scattered reactions from people and art communities across the globe shown to the oppressive travel ban of immigrants has developed into a powerful and unified movement.”
“This solidarity is off to a great start. I hope this movement will continue and spread for it has within itself the power to stand up to fascism, be victorious in the face of extremism and say no to oppressive political powers everywhere. We are all citizens of the world and I will endeavour to protect and spread this unity”
This was actually Asghar Farhadi’s second Academy Award, as he picked up his previous Oscar gong for 2011‘s ‘A Separation’.