Two-time Oscar winning Iranian film director Asghar Farhadi has been found guilty of plagiarizing a film student’s work for his new film A Hero by an Iranian court in Tehran.
According to Iranian law, the ruling cannot be appealed, a second judge will now determine Farhadi’s punishment. In the worst case, the director could be forced to hand over “all income earned by the screening of the film in theatres or online” to Masihzadeh.
Farhadi’s film A Hero has earned more than $2.5 million worldwide after premiering at Cannes Film Festival last year, where it won the Grand Jury award.
Farhadi had admitted his movie, in which a man on leave from debtor’s prison, finds a bag of gold coins and decides to try and return them to their rightful owner, was based on the same true story as All Winners All Losers, which Masihzadeh developed as a student at a documentary workshop taught by Farhadi. But the director did not give Masihzadeh credit for the idea, claiming he had independently researched the story.
Farhadi sued Masihzadeh for defamation and Masihzadeh countersued claiming Farhadi had plagiarized her original work.
Amazon Prime has the U.S. rights for the film.