The two leaders of Iranian film, Abbas Kiarostami and Mohsen Makhmalbaf, have spent a good deal of their time training and helping young filmmakers get started. Makhmalbaf has his own film school, and his wife and daughter have released extraordinary films under his tutelage. Kiarostami has helped out new filmmakers like Jafar Panahi by contributing story ideas and taking "story" credit on films like "The White Balloon" and the recent "Crimson Gold."
Less familiar in the US, filmmaker Ali Reza Raisian also gets a little help from Kiarostami for his latest film, "The Deserted Station."
It could be that Kiarostami has the magical touch. His films often consist of simple ideas that can be easily explained in a one or two-sentence pitch, and yet when you sit down to them, they grow much more complex and much more truthful than expected.
Continue reading: Deserted Station Review
Take a look back at October's inaugural event.
The film is expected to continue without Mendes' involvement.