|Zandi Haghighi, Mona
Date of birth
20 October 1972, Tehran, Iran
Mona Zandi Haghighi (20 October 1972, Tehran, Iran)
Mona Zandi (born October 1972 in Tehran) is an Iranian film director. She is a director and editor of short films, documentaries and feature films.
Her film work belongs to the cinema of post-revolutionary Iran, which focuses on contemporary social issues within Persian culture. Mona Zandi worked with Iranian film director and pioneer Rakhshan Bani-E'temad.
Mona Zandi studied Interior Design at Tehran University. Afterwards, she worked as an editor on several films, including Bull’s Horn (Kianoosh Avari, 1995), Rahban (Reza Sobhani, 1999) and The Eight Thirty Train (Behzad Khodaveisi, 2000).
Additionally, she directed several of her own short films and documentaries. On a Friday Afternoon (also known as Friday Evening or Asr e-Jome), released in 2006, was her first feature film.
On a Friday Afternoon
Mona Zandi's premiere feature film was released in 2006 by Cinema 79 Co. It was shot on 35mm Color 76’ film. The primary credits include Hussein Jafarian (cinematographer), Sepideh Abdolvahab (editor), Jila Mehrjooee (sets and costumes), Behrooz Moavenian (sound), Fardin Khalatbari (music) and Jahangir Kossari (producer).
The film documents the conflicts experienced by an Iranian family in Tehran. The screenplay of the film was written by Farid Mostafavi based on an idea of Mona Zandi’s. Within the film, Sogand (Roya Nownahall) and her son, Omid (Mehrdad Sedighiyan) do not get along. Omid acts out because he does not have a present father. It is suggested that Sogand has a secret that is affecting her wellbeing and relationship with her son until the arrival of Sogand’s sister, Banafshe (Haniye Tayassol) reveals the family's dark past. The film deals with topics of sexual abuse and familial dysfunction.
The film was screened at several International film festivals including the Tiburon International Film Festival (2007), the Rochelle International Film Festival (2007), the Fajr International Film Festival (2006), the Thessaloniki International Film Festival (2007) and the Gene Siskel Film Center’s Annual Festival of Films from Iran (2006).
Mona Zandi put together a book called You Were so Kind!, a collection of children’s letters and drawings based on the 2003 earthquake in Bam, Iran. According to Iranica Online, the earthquake had “the highest casualty rate and the most profound social impact in the recorded post-1900 history of devastating urban earthquakes in Iran.”
Awards and nominations
Mona Zandi won the Crystal Simorgh Special Jury Prize for On a Friday Afternoon in February 2006 at the 24th Fajr International Film Festival in Tehran, Iran. On a Friday Afternoon also received the Silver Alexander Special Jury award at the 47th Thessaloniki International Film Festival in November of 2006.
1998 – Secret of a View
2000 – Photo without a Frame
2002 – Bakhtayar’s Coloring Pencils
2006 – On a Friday Afternoon
Director - Selected filmography
African Violet | Banafsheh Afrighaei (2019)
On A Friday Afternoon | Asre Jomeh (2006)
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