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Iranian actress Taraneh Alidoosti boycotts Oscars over Trump visa ban

Alidoosti plans to boycott Academy Awards over Trump's 'racist' executive order.


Kahron Spearman


Published Jan 26, 2017   Updated May 25, 2021, 3:12 am CDT

As a stand against President Trump and his “racist” ban on Iranian visas, actor Taraneh Alidoosti, star of Academy Award-nominated film The Salesman, explained on her Instagram that she will be boycotting the 89th edition of the prestigious ceremony.

“Trump’s visa ban for Iranians and others is a racist move and unacceptable,” said Alidoosti, occasionally called the “Natalie Portman” of Iran. “Whether this will include a cultural event or not, I won’t attend the #AcademyAwards 2017 in protest.”

The Salesman is a socially conscious, Asghar Farhadi-directed film about a young couple, a local production of Arthur Miller’s acclaimed Death of a Salesman, and their relationship trials. 

Her absence would cast a bright light on Trump’s increasingly divisive policy, should the film win its category. It’s the running favorite for best foreign language film.

Farhadi won an Oscar in the category—and the Berlin International Film Festival’s Golden Bear for best film—for critical darling A Separation in 2012. It’s the first Iranian film to win the award.

Alidoosti’s protest comes on the heels of news that Trump is expected to sign an executive order, restricting visits and immigration visas (except for security-related exemptions) from seven specific, Muslim-majority countries, including Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, Libya, Syria, and Sudan.

Per the Intercept, a draft text was leaked to the Huffington Post and the Los Angeles Times with the title, “Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Attacks by Foreign Nationals.” It also called for immediate suspension of visa issuance for at least 30 days, in lieu of new vetting guidance.

The text states: “In order to protect Americans, we must ensure that those admitted to this country do not bear hostile attitudes toward our country and its founding principles.”

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*First Published: Jan 26, 2017, 4:25 pm CST