In the recent years, the Iranian cinema has made significant achievements on the world stage, from Academy Awards to Cannes Film Festival, owing most of it to the Kurdish artists.
Despite the strict rules imposed by a government ministry of the Islamic Republic of Iran, cinema in the country has produced outstanding works to which the Kurds have greatly contributed.
Below is a list of the most prominent Kurdish actors in Iran:
Navid Mohammadzadeh was born in the Iranian Kurdish province of Ilam. He is among the top actors in Iran who has won several Iranian and international film awards. His role in “I’m Not Angry” and “Just 6.5” was widely praised by critics. He won the Best Actor Award in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria International Film Festival in 2018, and Orizzonti/ Horizon Prize for Best Actor at the 74th Venice International Film Festival 2017.
In 2018, he also received Best actor Award in Slemani International Film Festival 2018 in the Kurdistan Region.
Hutan Shakiba was born in 1984 in Sanandaj, Kurdistan province. He is among the best praised actors in Iran. Shakiba is the nephew of the well-known Kurdish sculpture Hadi Ziaaddin, and a close friend of Navid Mohammadzade.
Farhad Aslani was born in Bijar, Kurdistan province. He began his career as an actor in theaters. At the age of 54 now, Aslani is considered a prominent actor who stars in every role he is given.
Saeed Aghakhani was born on February 23, 1972 in Bijar, Kurdistan province. He is an actor and director, known for "The Long Farewell" (2015), "Lamp 100" (2014) and "The Truck" (2018). Aghakhani won the Best Actor Award at the Duhok International Film Festival for his role in “The Truck”.
Shila Khodadad is one of the best actresses in Iran whose mother is from Mahabad, the Iranian Kurdistan. She has taken part in scores of most successful films and TV Shows in Iran, among which are “Marriage”, “Iranian Style”, “Saint Petersburg”, and “A Traveller from India”.
Niusha Zeighami is originally Kurdish but born in Tehran. She began acting in 2006. Zeyghami has appeared in several movies, including “The Juggler” (2004), “The Confrontation” (2004), “My Sin” (2006), “Hidden Feeling” (2006), “Parkway” (2006), “The Outcasts” (2006), “Forced Blessing” (2007), “The Outcasts 2” (2008), “Extreme Cold” (2009), “Mirror and Candlestick” (2012) and “Iran Burger” (2014).
Maryam Boubani is another Kurdish actress who was born in Sanandaj, Kurdistan province. She is known for staring in well-received films, including “The Fifth Season” (1997), “Hotel New Moon” (2019) and “Under the Skin of the City” (2001).
Ali Shadman was born on November 24, 1996 in Ilam, Iranian Kurdistan. He is known for “Drowning in Holy Water” (2020), “Arvand” (2016) and “Hotel New Moon” (2019).
Navid Pourfaraj was born in Kermanshah. He is known for “Sheeple” (2018), “Bone Marrow” (2020) and “The Frog” (2020). In “Sheeple”, Navid Pourfaraj co-starred with Navid Mohammadzadeh and Farhad Aslani. The three Kurdish actors made the film to become one of the masterpieces of the Iranian cinema.
Kurosh Soleimani is a Kurdish actor, director, and TV presenter. He is the grandson of renowned Kurdish playwright and poet Almas Khan Kanoolayi.
Baran Zamani is from Kermanshah. She is known for “U-Turn” and “Flamingo No. 13”(2010), and her role in Abbas Kiarostami’s “Shirin” (2008).
Shahen Alizadeh is an actress and director who runs a center to educate young actors in Tehran. She is known for “The Last Act” (1991), “Zinat” (1994) and “Travellers” (1992).