Aamir Bashir has an interesting casting story to tell about Reza Naji, the award-winning Iranian actor, who stars in his soon-to-release film Harud.
Bashir first met Reza when he visited Tehran to meet veteran filmmaker Majid Majidi. It was around then that Majidi’s acclaimed film starring Reza, The Song of Sparrows had just released. And Aamir had an amusing experience later. He says, “I somehow ended up helping Majidi, my favourite director, with the German subtitling of the film as I have basic knowledge of the language.
Incidentally, Reza Naji went on to win the best actor award at the Berlin Film Festival that year. I told him he owed me one and that’s why he did my film!”
However, shooting presented Bashir with a tricky problem. The veteran Iranian actor could not communicate in any other language other than the Azeri dialect of Farsi. In the end, they resorted to sign language.
Aamir further adds that it was a delight to work with “a truthful actor” like Naji. “I’ve never met a person like him before. It was very cold while we were shooting in Kashmir but he never complained once. The spicy food available was not of his liking but he didn’t make a fuss. The 12 days he spent with us taught me a lot,” Aamir sums up.