The Islamic Republic News Agency announced Abbas Kiarostami died in the city of Paris. A medical team declared the famous Iranian director dead on July 4th, and a lot of people including fans, other directors, and many celebrities are grieving the loss. He is going to be remembered for films like “The Taste of Cherry” (1997) and his iconic sunglasses. The Iranian artists suffered from light sensitivity which forced him to wear sunglasses almost all the time.

Kiarostami had already been hospitalized earlier this year, in March, due to a severe intestinal bleeding. He went through two surgeries, and the Ministry of Health and Medical Education in France said he suffered from gastrointestinal cancer. However, Reza Paydar who is the man in charge of Kiarostami’s medical team denied the diagnosis. There are no details on what specifically caused his death, and it is too soon to know if the authorities will release the autopsy’s report.

Abbas Kiarostami creator of Certified Copy, Taste of Cherry, Like Someone In Love, Close‑Up, Where Is the Friend’s Home. Credit: alchetron

“Reality is always magic. For me, that statement sums up Kiarostami’s extraordinary body of work. Some refer to his pictures as “minimal” or “minimalist”, but it’s actually the opposite: every scene in Taste of Cherry or Where is the Friend’s House? is overflowing with beauty and surprise, patiently and exquisitely captured,” said the famous Martin Scorsese when he heard about Kiarostami’s passing.

Against all the odds, the Iranian director leaves a career full of success

Abba Kiarostami is thought to be part of the filmmakers from the Iranian new wave which includes big names such as Masoud Kimiai and Sohrab Shahid Saless. He shot a lot of shorts and documentaries using a style that many have labeled as minimalist.

His movies are famous for having protagonist children and real-life characters going through situations that reflected the Geopolitical situation the director himself was dealing with. He was first acknowledged for his work in the Koker Trilogy (1987 – 1994) and Close Up in 1990.

However, it was his work with Taste of Cherry that catapulted him to stardom. The masterpiece earned him the coveted Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival.

But the man had already left a large artistic trace in his home country with movies like The Chorus and Fellow Citizen. Its work with “Where is the Friend’s House?” broke the international barrier, and foreign movie fans started following his career which peaked at the Cannes Festival in 1997.

The man was restless, and he never stopped doing what he loved. “The Wind Will Carry Us” gave him a Golden Lion nomination at the Venice Film Festival, and he got the Grand Special Jury Prize, also known as the Silver Lion. He almost always filmed in Iran, but for his last two movies “Certified Copy” (2010) and “Like Someone in Love” (2012) he traveled abroad and overseas to Italy and Japan respectively.

It is an excellent opportunity for both life-long and new fans to revisit Abba Kiarostami’s work. In fact, some cinemas in the United States, and likely around the world, are going to play his movies as a tribute. It would be a good idea for fans of classic cinema to check on vintage film’s schedules and websites for more information.

Source: Hollywood Reporter