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The Absent Director

The Absent Director

by ARVAND DASHTARAY (IR, 2021, 86')

Drama, Experimental


In one continuous take, the film follows the various members of a young Iranian theater company during their secret rehearsals of Macbeth at their Director’s home in Tehran, while he works with them remotely from Paris via video call. Their dream is to submit the play to the Edinburgh Theater Festival on time, but things get complicated when their personal conflicts escalate, and their hidden agendas come into light. The heated tensions reach their climax when a mysterious tragedy threatens to put their work into a complete halt.

The complex layers of their reality are slowly unraveled as the film seamlessly fuses the past with the present, the fiction with the non-fiction, even crossing the bridge to reality with the actors performing as themselves.


Director: Arvand Dashtaray
Writer: Naghmeh Samini
Cinematographer: Peyman Shadmanfar
Producer: Hossein Akbari (Virgule FPAC)
Cast: Marene van Holk, Arvand Dashtaray, Azadeh Mirzaei, Diba Khatami et al.