Helmer will ‘Fly’ to Iraq

Ghobadi to aid ailing film industry

NEW YORK — The Iraqi Ministry of Culture has tapped Iranian auteur Bahman Ghobadi — whose latest effort, “Turtles Can Fly,” was picked up by IFC Films for U.S. distribution — to act as a consultant on a nascent program to build movie theaters in the country.

Arrangement would also see Ghobadi conducting seminars on cinematography and consulting on the construction of cinema education centers.

Iran’s film industry is aiding in the push to renovate Iraq’s cinemas.

Ghobadi, whose past credits include “A Time for Drunken Horses,” will travel to Iraq this week for the preem of “Turtles” at the Crystal Theater in Arbil City.

CBS is documenting Ghobadi’s trip to the country, where the helmer will meet with Nechirvan Barzani of the Kurdistan Regional Government to discuss the rebuilding of cinemas in the region.

The helmer’s “Turtles” follows the story of a 13-year-old boy who dynamically leads a cadre of kids sweeping mine fields in Kurdistan. Pic, which stars non-pro child actors, is set on the eve of the American invasion of Iraq.

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