It’s been more than five years since the Berlin International Film Festival premiere of the film, which garnered the festival’s Silver Bear award and propelled Farhadi to the forefront of the world cinema stage. The film also won the Best Film award at Tribeca in 2009 and was Iran’s official entry to the Academy Awards.
Although “About Elly” was acquired for distribution not long after its premiere, according to Variety, the film never received a proper release because the initial distributor went out of business.
A lot has changed for Farhadi since the premiere of “About Elly.” In 2011, Farhadi completed “A Separation,” which not only won the Golden Bear at Berlin, but also resulted in an Academy Award for the filmmaker — a first for an Iranian filmmaker. At last year’s Cannes Film Festival, Bernice Bejo took home the Best Actress award for her performance in Farhadi’s film “The Past.”
The long-awaited release of “About Elly” speaks to how the film industry is, at its core, a business, and therefore subject to the successes and the pitfalls of any other business venture. The trajectory of Farhadi’s career demonstrates how art remains constant, and can even flourish, in the face of adversity.
“About Elly” will open at the New York Film Forum on April 8, 2015. A national release will follow.