Die Jury der 65. Berlinale hat ein politisches Zeichen gesetzt: Der regimekritische Iraner Jafar Panahi erhielt für seinen Film „Taxi“ den Goldenen Bären. Er selbst durfte nicht anreisen. Einen Silbernen Bären erhielt der deutsche Regisseur Sebastian Schipper.
Taxi (Persian: تاکسی) is a 2015 Iranian drama film starring and directed by Jafar Panahi. It premiered in competition at the 65th Berlin International Film Festival. Similar as Abbas Kiarostami’s Ten and A Taste of Cherry, it has been described as “a portrait of the Iranian capital Tehran” and as a “documentary-like film is set in a Tehran taxi that is driven by Panahi” with passengers who “candidly confide[e]” to Panahi. According to Jean-Michel Frodon, the passengers include “Men and women, young and old, rich and poor, traditionalists and modernists, video pirates vendors and advocate of human rights, [who sit] in the passenger seat of the inexperienced driver [who they refer to as] Harayé Panahi, ‘Mr. Panahi.’” The passengers are played by non-professional actors, whose identities remain anonymous.
Like his previous two films This Is Not a Film and Closed Curtain, it was made despite Panahi’s 20-year ban from making films.His previous two films had been shot in extreme secrecy in Panahi’s apartment and in a private house. In this film Panahi filmed out in the open on the streets of Tehran.
Shortly after the film’s premiere at Berlin was announced, Panahi released an official statement in which he promised to continue making films despite the ban and said ““Nothing can prevent me from making films since when being pushed to the ultimate corners I connect with my inner-self and, in such private spaces, despite all limitations, the necessity to create becomes even more of an urge.” At the Berlin Film Festival, the film won the FIPRESCI Prize.