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Shadia: Coming together over ‘A Separation’

A group of Iranian-American women are making sure Southern California knows an Iranian film has been nominated for an Oscar with a viewing party Sunday.

The Iranian American Women Foundation in Orange County is hosting an Oscar-viewing party at 5 p.m. Sunday at PoSch Restaurant in Irvine to celebrate the nomination of “A Separation,” Iranian culture and, specifically, the sacrifice and strength of Iranian women, said foundation founder Mariam Khosravani.

Irvine has a large Persian-American population.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences nominated “A Separation” for Best Foreign Language Film and for its original screenplay.


The movie has already been recognized by various film industry organizations. It even won this year’s Golden Globe for Best Foreign Language Film.

This is the second time the Academy has nominated a movie from Iran. “Children of Heaven” was up for the foreign language film award in 1999.

“A Separation” tells the story of a married couple who struggle with whether to leave the country in search of a better future for their child or stay to take care of an elderly and ill parent.

“It shows the challenges women are going through back in Iran,” Khosravani said. “It shows what women have to go through in order to thrive and keep their family together. It’s a story for women, and because we are a women’s organization, that caught our attention.”


With political tension rising between Iran and the West, the nomination is a break from politics and even viewed by many as a goodwill gesture on the part of the Academy.

“I think it was extremely brave for the Academy to honor and acknowledge this movie because it gives a voice to so many women who might not have been heard before, and it’s an opportunity for the world to hear them,” Khosravani said.

Khosravani said the movie shows that people face the same struggles and experience the same emotions in life, no matter their country.

But Sunday will not all be about partying and celebrating.

Proceeds will benefit the International Society for Children with Cancer, an organization that funds care for children with cancer here and in seven other countries, including Iran, Khosravani said.

Even if the movie doesn’t win, the nomination is a huge accomplishment, she said.

“Hopefully we’re going to celebrate its winning,” Khosravani said.


Twitter: @MonaShadia

If You Go

What: Oscar-viewing party to celebrate the nomination of “A Separation”

Where: PoSch Restaurant, 18912 MacArthur Blvd., Irvine

When: 5 p.m. Sunday

Cost: $75 includes dinner and champagne

Information: (949) 679-9911