Iranian Series ‘The Actor’ Globally Shines as Iran's Private Sector Cinema Production
Mansour Jahani - beside the official television stations in each country, there are Video On Demand platforms that produce multimedia content ranging from programs, game shows, movies, and series all across the world. The Iranian TV series ‘The Actor’ directed by Nima Javidi and produced by Majid Motalebi is among the titles that have recently gained recognition and accolade in several specialized international festivals.
Using a new structure, this show links the world of theater to that of real life experienced by the majority of people, with each episode narrating a new story some of which replicate real life events and circumstances.
‘The Actor’ revolves around two characters – a pair of theater actors portrayed by Navid Mohammadzadeh and Ahmad Mehranfar performing a variety of roles in each story and bringing about a series of incidents, just to make their ends meet. Sometimes disguised as a junkie helping out a father who wants to know if his daughter is an addict, and on another occasion, commissioned by the groom-to-be, playing the role of two bandits staging a surprise and adventurous proposal.
Performing all these various roles entails different make-up and character designs which contribute to the charm and attraction of this show. In fact, the viewer is faced with a distinct story and atmosphere in each episode, creating an ambiance that urges them to continue watching the following segments.
The opening and ending of this show features two actors on a stage, with each sequence reminiscent of the quote by Shakespeare "All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players, and one man in his time plays many parts." In fact, ‘The Actor’ recalls this terrible yet sweet reality at the opening and ending scene of each episode, albeit in an attempt to narrate it in-depth.
Receiving the Grand Prix of France's Series Mania is one of the latest achievements of this show. Series Mania is an international festival for TV series that is held annually in Lille, France. In addition, about 400 shows from a variety of countries had signed up for this festival, only eight of which were judged in the international category.
The presence of ‘The Actor’ as the only representative of Iran in Transylvania International TV Series Festival is also a new development; an event which is the largest and most prestigious among the European festivals and those of the Eastern Europe, and ‘The Actor’ was featured in the It Will Follow Series category along with successful shows from Norway, Iceland, Lithuania, Canada, Belgium, Denmark, and Germany.
The 9th round of the International SerienCamp Festival featured ‘The Actor’ in the main competition category, as the Iranian show's third global presence vying with productions of big companies such as Warner Bros Discovery and Amazon Studios, and got a screening along with successful TV series from countries like the US, Norway, Spain, Mexico, and Kazakhstan.
Achieving such a huge success for a series that was not distributed by the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting but aired on a privately-run platform bears proof of the progress made in the private cinema of this country as it is the first time that an Iranian show represents this country on an international scale, apparently attracting avid viewers of the field from all around the world.