Persepolis, a prize-winner at last week's Cannes film festival, has been accused of "Islamophobia" by officials in Iran. Co-directed by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud, the animated black-and-white film tells the tale of a girl growing up during the 1979 Islamic revolution. Persepolis is based on Satrapi's autobiographical graphic novel and features the voices of Catherine Deneuve, Danielle Darrieux and Gena Rowlands.
Satrapi and Paronnaud's adaptation was hailed by critics when it debuted at the Cannes film festival and went on to share the jury prize with Carlos Reygadas's Mexican drama Stellet Licht (Silent Night). The Iranian authorities have described the presentation of the award as "an unconventional and unsuitable act".
Persepolis focuses on a middle-class Teheran family who are initially delighted by the overthrow of the shah, only to become fearful and disillusioned when the revolution is shown to be hijacked by religious fundamentalists. Speaking to the Teheran-based news agency Fars, Iranian official Mehdi Halhor claimed that Persepolis presents "an unrealistic picture of the achievements and results of the glorious Islamic Revolution." Halhor is described as an adviser to the Iranian president for cinematic affairs.
Co-director Satrapi currently lives in exile in France and Persepolis was produced with French money.