TEHRAN (AFP) — Iran has banned an award-winning young actress from leaving the country over her appearance in a star-studded Hollywood production, the state news agency IRNA said on Wednesday.
"Golshifteh Farahani was banned from leaving by the authorities at the airport on Tuesday when she was about to leave for Hollywood to examine a new offer," IRNA said quoting an informed source.
The state agency said the decision was prompted by her starring in Ridley Scott's latest movie "Body of Lies" with Hollywood heartthrobs Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crowe.
IRNA said Iranian actors are required to obtain a permit from the ministry of culture and Islamic guidance in order to appear in foreign movies.
The 25-year-old Farahani is one of Iran's most popular actresses and has starred in several Iranian movies, including "Santouri", which tells the story of young couple in which the husband, a musician, becomes a drug addict.
The film was criticised by conservative newspapers in particular as having portrayed a negative image of Iranian society and its drug problem, which affects some two million people.
She has also starred in Kurdish director Bahman's Ghobadi's "Half Moon", which won the 2006 Golden Seashell in the San Sebastian International Film Festival.
Her appearance in "Body of Lies", which tells the story of a CIA agent sent to Jordan to track down an Al-Qaeda leader, marked the first by an actress living in Iran in a Hollywood production.
Conservative Internet site Tabnak two days ago criticised Farahani for having played in "Body of Lies" and asked why the authorities had not taken steps against her.
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