Arseh Sevom — July 15, 2013 was another in a long list of bad days for Iran’s beleaguered House of Cinema. On the order of the Ministry of Culture, the building that houses the organization was broken into and shut down by the police.
At midnight on July 15, security forces from the police and the guard of the Ministry of Culture sealed off the building. The next day, a number of filmmakers gathered outside the building in protest.
Farhad Tohidi, the president of the board of House of Cinema, spoke before the demonstrators, giving a deadline of 48 hours to officials to review the decision to close them down. In his speech, he said that protestors would return if the building remained closed.
The president of the Ministry of Culture’s Cinema Organization, which was founded as a government sponsored and controlled replacement for the independent House of Cinema, responded to the demands stating that the decision could not be changed by demonstrating in the streets.
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad expressed his opposition to the closure of the House of Cinema, saying that its closure was a bad decision.