Singapore– The 26th edition of the Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF) is set to pay tribute to acclaimed Iranian filmmaker Mohsen Makhmalbaf this December. In recognition of his lifelong dedication and contribution to cinema, the Festival will confer him with an Honorary Award, and include a retrospective of his works as part of its line-up.

A legacy of Iranian cinema, Makhmalbaf has gained worldwide recognition for his powerful use of film as both a cultural statement and an educative art form. The self-taught director has released more than 20 critically-acclaimed feature films since 1983, exploring themes and pushing boundaries surrounding Iran’s social and political environment and its people through his works. Most recently at the 2015 Venice Film Festival, he was awarded the prestigious Robert Bresson Award, dedicated to ‘a director who has given testimony of the difficult path towards the search for the spiritual meaning of life’.

SGIFF Executive Director, Yuni Hadi, said, “Makhmalbaf’s films have been a regular feature in the history of SGIFF, with Gabbeh opening the festival in 1997, and Kandahar in 2002. His unyielding efforts in conveying the untold stories of a region through film, in honest and profound ways, are unmatched. We celebrate and pay tribute to his perseverance, fervour and conviction as both artist and advocate, and strongly believe that he will inspire future generations of filmmakers to continue telling our Asian story.”