by Darius Kadivar
Nahid Persson Sarvestani's Film "The Queen and I" is amongst the 16 films competing at the Sundance International Film Festival. VOA interviews the director on her Documenatary film with insights on behind the scenes.


BIO of Nahid Persson Sarvestani:
Born in Shiraz, Iran, Nahid Persson Sarvestani took political asylum in Sweden after the 1979 revolution in Iran. Nahid’s social-political films have won her over 25 awards including an International Emmy nomination for "Prostitution Behind the Veil". In 2006 Nahid was arrested in Iran for her critical depiction of women under the Islamic Republic regime.The release of her current film, "The Queen and I" will coincide with the 30-year anniversary of the Islamic Revolution. More on Her Filmographie

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It was very regular film

by Mahboobeh (not verified) on

It was very regular film about someone famous, like queen. For me it make sense if Farah likes to have a movie from her daily life but I won't underestand how this communist lady who lost his brother is interested to make a very simple movie like this and more than that, I don't get for which specific character of Farah she became Farah follower? Indeed, Farah didn't let her make a movie as she liked and sencored every part that she didn't like. Off course she's (I mean Farah) still pretty and nice lady but not very special action to make the follwer from an enemy this easily! Yes, I guess money makes the people to do such a thing!


The title of the film is not "Hardtalk," it's "The Queen and I."

by Christine Milrod (not verified) on

Nahid Persson Sarvestani has had nothing to do with this expression - this was decided by the editor(s) of this website. Just wanted to clarify, as it seems to be a potential misunderstanding.


Farah was Shah's Enemy No.1

by reborn monarchist (not verified) on

For more than twenty years she reaped te benefits of being the Shah's consort while she and her family (Reza Ghotbi and her Mommy) plus many others took a share of the loot. She was aformer leftie tunred Shahi. She was the wrong choice for the Shah and she continues to undermine and destroy the institution of monarchy thirty years after its downfall.


Marge! Intellectual?

by Ned Flanders (not verified) on

Give me a break. I know him (sorry her) for more than 20 years! She just mumbles.



by Ajam (not verified) on

This ideological antagonism plot is a ploy to steer up hypes. That is why they're called teasers. Hollywood has been doing that for 100 years. However, nowadays it's more in the form of drawing parallels between te real life and the narrative line (e.g. the actors getting hurt during stunt, tentions between the actors, clash of opposites...)!


I think that what Empress

by Emerald (not verified) on

I think that what Empress Farah and Nahid Persson Sarvestani did is worth all praise! Two persons of quite different backgrounds and opinions got together, shared their experiences and opinions, and finally reconcilde with one another despite their differences. I think that's beautiful. If we could all be so openminden we would have a much better world. Instead many people behave like the person who calls the late Shah of Iran a "moron" here: they live entreched in their past as prisoners who are unable to free themselves from past burdens. I would be very surprised if this bitter person who has taken it upon himself to put labels on people - even people he never knew - has evolved much over the past 30 years!

What this film can teach us is that while we all view the same wase, we wiew it from different angles. The position where we stand determines how we see the wase. If we can bear this in mind it will be easier for us to understand both sides in a conflict. Hence, we could possibly understand both Hamas and the Israelis, and have empathy for both views. We could even understand the Islamic Republic and the Pahlavi monarchy that it toppled. Their stories are the stories of the different spectators of the wase. What is "right" and "wrong" depends so much on where one stands in relation to the wase.

To the person who calls Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi a "moron": You should try to judge less and be more self-critical instead. You probably didn't even know Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, and yet you take your self the freedom to make such hateful remarks about him. Let God and history judge him. You know too little about him to be able to judge him. Also, don't believe all that you read and hear. We people all have shortcomings of all sorts, whether we are politicians, journalists or writers.



by Quebeqi on

This is a very fascinating documentary. Khanum Sarvestani should come here in Montreal to show it. Most of my Iranian friends here, and myself, will surely enjoy this event.

Be farmayid Khanum Sarvestani, Be Quebec be-ayid! Hava-e Keshvar-e man sard nist! ;) And quebeqiha-ye are quite friendly!

I Have a Crush on Alex Trebek

Hahaha so talking about Farah is self-hate. But hating communist

by I Have a Crush on Alex Trebek on

is democratic! How nice! We're making terrific strides here.

If you notice, Farah doesn't even bother, like her moron husband did, to make lofty statements about who and what is at fault. Did you notice that lady at the tea party, Faramarz_Fateh maybe LOL, who was disseminating the cold facts about what REALLY caused the revolutions? Why it was the Great Satan of course. Yes. Ok so hopefully everyone who can be blamed has been blamed (including Jahanshah Javid, Q, Rosie, Jaleho, et alia), and we can move on to the fixing, right? right?

Also, Nahid, if you are reading this, I realy think this title "hardtalk" is silly. Showing Farah talk about how the king behaved with women and controlled his sexual urges is not hardtalk. It is Oprah Winfrey Lite. 


Moo Abi

by Anonymous I. (not verified) on

Why do you have to always analyze things? OK we get it, you are an intellectual and you don't care for monarchy. Can you let it go now?

One more thing, I do know those communists in Iran who facilitated the revolution, now they won't drive anything less than Mercedes Benzes and their wives can't get enough of botox. Most of the communists left Iran and took the refuge in the west instead of the east, just waiting to see which department store has sale so they can buy more junk. Oh the hypocrisy!

I Have a Crush on Alex Trebek

This isn't self-hate. I love Farah. But this title is stupid

by I Have a Crush on Alex Trebek on

it was probably harder for Nahid than for Farah. Discussing whether she has found new love or was approached by men? That is not hardtalk. But I'm NOT disappointed. You can't expect a queen to talk about politics or anything beyond "i wore this and they bought me a new trunk. we had this and that china and the poor orphans hugged me tightly." She is a bit of a fool, Nahid, to ask her about the revolution at all. 

On a side note, it would have been so great if these boogymen Soviets had taken over the shah's precious throne. They, unlike the current monsters, IRI, would have been gone with the end of the cold war. Reagan or Bush Senior could have added another notch to their bed posts and by the end of the Cold War, I think, Reza (he was out of college by then, and fully capable of running a nation, you see, that's how well monarchy works!) the wonder boy could have taken over and Darius wouldn't be blogging about the glorious silky luxurious past. But of course, the USA and all parties involved failed. Always better in hindsight. Always.

Shazde Asdola Mirza

Mr. Darius: nice post, she is still the queen of iran's heart

by Shazde Asdola Mirza on

ماشالله مثل قالی کاشان می‌‌مونه، که هر چی‌ می‌گذره از سکه نمی‌‌افته!

چشم ملا کور و درد و بلاش بخوره تو سر مقام معظم رهبری!


some people talk against

by letgoofselfhate (not verified) on

some people talk against Farah and the monarch as if they are talking about their own family. They behave like the "Taghootis" they claim to hate. Taghootis who think that by hating their object of Taghoot, they will redeem their souls. Baba joon, enjoy your good karma and just accept it for what it was. You don't have to consume yourself with hatred of what reminds of yourself. Chill out and enjoy the blessings you were afforded because of being Taghooti. You don't have to feel so guilty.


Sometimes good things come too late!

by moradi (not verified) on

If Shah and Farah could be this honest with people back then, their dynasty would have remained intact for many years to come.

Her excuse of communism and threat of Soviet Union for crushing the opposition back then reminds me the similar argument by the IRI regarding the "Great Satan" today. History repeats itself, especially for us Iranians!


Laila was the cutest of the two!

by eruni (not verified) on

I saw Farah interview about her daughter Laila in which she blamed her being away from Iran her cause of death,but according to BBC she overdosed on combination of muscle relaxer and cocaine while staying in a hotel in London paying $700 a night for a room.I do not think she could have been making this kind of money from a 9 to 5 job.

I Have a Crush on Alex Trebek

The name of this movie is not appropriate.

by I Have a Crush on Alex Trebek on

Farah is many things, but capable of "hard talk" she is not. Asking her about the shah and communism? Her family was communist for god's sake. She doesn't give a damn about communism or Soviets. She wanted the fancy life and she got it. She still has it. See, this is the tragedy of monarchy, all you aspiring kings and queens, it is NOT a fairy tale. Monarchy is and was always a sick, sad narrative, especially for the women.


Darius jan,

by Anonymous I. (not verified) on

Merci merci merci. I have always admired Farah. I can't wait to see this film.


Darius khan

by ahvazi on

thanks for sharing. Loved it.


Great Job Banoo Nahid

by Anonymous-Iranian (not verified) on

Nahid P. Sarvestani is a great Persian/Iranian. I'm proud of her and her work.