Journey to Yazdegerd Castle (film screening & discussion)

Aref Mohammadi
Thu April 27th 2023, 6:30 - 8:00pm
Event Sponsor
Hamid and Christina Moghadam Program in Iranian Studies
Event is open to
Experience Type
In person at Stanford (RSVP for location)

Join us for a film screening of the documentary Journey to Yazdegerd Castle (2023, 52 minutes) and a conversation with the film’s writer and director, Aref Mohammadi. Film is in English with Persian subtitles. Discussion will be in English.

When Dr. Edward Keall, a British-Canadian archeologist now in his 80s, was a young man studying in London, he became interested in Iranian history and made a life-changing journey to Iran. In the early 1970s, he immigrated to Canada and was hired by the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM). In 1974, he assembled a team and equipment from the ROM and returned to Iran. Ultimately, after some struggles at Yazdegerd Castle (Kermanshah), he made a significant historical discovery about Iran’s Arsacid and Sassanid eras.  The revolution of 1978 in Iran and subsequent insecurity of western foreigners insisted Edward depart from Iran for Canada.

The aim of the Journey to Yazdegerd Castle film is to spark curiosity and an appreciation for history and archaeology, through non-fiction storytelling, and to use the story to promote an understanding of diverse cultures. The legendary history of Yazdegerd’s castle, and the local legends associated with it, mesh well with the objective of showcasing topics that are both diverse and inclusive.

Aref Mohammadi

Aref Mohammadi is a well-known journalist, film-critic, filmmaker, and TV producer within the Iranian communities outside Iran. In addition, he is the director of the New Wave Artistic and Cultural Group, which was founded by him in 2004 to introduce film and cinema to the Iranian community of Toronto through seminars, educational workshops, discussion panels and holding tributes to Iranian veteran and contemporary artists.

Aref’s education ranges from Farsi literature to filmmaking and social work studies. He studied for his B.A. in Farsi literature in Iran. After immigrating to Canada, he completed a Diploma in Community Work from George Brown College in 2004. In 2006 he was admitted as an M.F.A. student in the Documentary Media Program of Ryerson University in Toronto.

His interviews with established cineastes was published in a book Iranian Cinema, Today, Yesterday in 2010. During these years, Aref has also made two short documentaries called Bus (2005), about the first female bus driver in Iran, and New Horizon (2009) which introduced the first female mechanic in Iran. His featured documentary A Survivor from Magadan (2012) and Song of God (2018) have been selected in numerous international film festivals and received several awards. Journey to Yazdegerd Castle (2023) is Aref’s latest documentary.

If you need a disability-related accommodation for this event, please contact us at iranianstudies [at] (iranianstudies[at]stanford[dot]edu).  Requests should be made by April 19, 2023.