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Scotland’s St Andrews University honors Iranian maestro

University of St Andrews in Scotland honors Iranian playwright and filmmaker Bahram Beyzaie.

The University of St Andrews in Scotland has honored highly praised Iranian playwright, theater and film director Bahram Beyzaie with the Doctor of Letters (DLitt).

The Scotch honor was bestowed to Beyzai in recognition of his literary, artistic and research achievements.

Currently living in the US, he is one of the 12 distinguished individuals honored at the university’s Younger Hall on June 20-23.

Born in 1938 in Tehran, director, producer, screen-writer and film editor Bahram Beyzaie was introduced to the world of art when he was still very young.

He wrote two historical plays which eventually became his preferred method of writing while in high school.

Beyzaie then entered University of Tehran, but did not finish his studies and started researching Iranian theatre, epic literature, pre-Islamic history and Persian painting.

At the age of 21, he did an extensive research on the ‘Book of Kings’ (The Shahname) and Ta’azieh which is an Iranian traditional passion play.

He also wrote a number of articles about cinema and some books, including ‘The Eighth Voyage of Sinbad’, ‘Banquet’, ‘Serpent King’, ‘Dolls’, ‘Story of the Hidden Moon’.

He started his film career with a successful short film named ‘Uncle Mustache’ in 1970 and directed his masterpiece ‘Downpour’ in 1971.

Besides writing a large number of film scripts, Beyzaie has directed some movies, including ‘The Death of Yazdgerd’, ‘Perhaps Another Time’, ‘The Passengers’, ‘Killing Dogs’, and ‘While We Sleep’.

He has won several awards at domestic and international film festivals, including the Best Screenplay award for ‘Killing Dogs’ at 19th International Tehran Film Festival.

Launched in 1413, St Andrews university is the oldest of the four ancient universities of Scotland and the third oldest in the English-speaking world (after Oxford and Cambridge).