By Shipra Harbola Gupta | Indiewire June 10, 2014 at 5:20PM
Variance Films has acquired the North American distribution rights to Jafar Panahi's "Closed Curtain." One of Iran's most celebrated filmmakers, Panahi has been under house arrest since 2011 after the Iranian government banned him from making any films for 20 years. "Closed Curtain" marks Panahi's second time defying the ban placed upon him by the government - the first was with the 2011 documentary "This is Not a Film."
With "Closed Curtain," Panahi returns to the narrative feature form. The film centers on a screenwriter living in seclusion with his dog. His life is turned upside down when a young woman fleeing from the authorities arrives on his doorstep.
"Jafar Panahi's bravery is surpassed only by his artistry," said Variance Films' Dylan Marchetti. "It's our ultimate hope that we can continue to bring attention to his unjust house arrest and ban from filmmaking while reminding the world that nobody can stop artists from developing their craft and sharing their creativity with audiences."
"Closed Curtain" won the Silver Bear for Best Script at the Berlin Film Festival earlier this year and will open at the Film Forum in New York City on July 9 and will expand throughout the U.S. and Canada over the rest of the summer.