In message to Trump, London to screen Iranian Oscar nominee

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Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, said, "On the night of the Oscars, it's absolutely fantastic to be able to screen the United Kingdom premiere of The Salesman in Trafalgar Square". The Guardian suggests 10,000 people could attend what will be London's biggest open-air cinema.

Its director has said he will not go to the Oscars due to President Trump's attempts to bar people from seven Muslim-majority countries, including Iran.

The ban has since been suspended, but Farhadi has chosen not to attend the Academy Awards where 'The Salesman' has been nominated in the Best Foreign Language Film category.

Sadiq Khan said on Tuesday that The Salesman will be shown at London's Trafalgar Square on Oscars night.

Under the ban Asghar Farhadi, the film's award-winning director, would have been turned away at the border.

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He said: "Screening The Salesman in Trafalgar Square has a great symbolic value for me". Doors open at 3pm, and it's expected to be busy, so get there early and listen to readings and speeches by filmmakers, including Mike Leigh, an old friend of Farhadi, who is urging Londoners to show up in force: 'We must show solidarity with Asghar and his principles, and against divisiveness and hate'. He said that the free screening in London will represent "an global hub of creativity and as a beacon of diversity".

It's not known yet if Farhadi himself will be in London on February 26, but he described the screening as "a symbol of unity against the division and separation of people".

The screening came about after film-makers and actors including Keira Knightley and Kevin Macdonald tried to secure permission to have the film screened in Grosvenor Square, near the United States embassy.

"The Salesman" stars Shahab Hosseini and Taraneh Alidoosti in the story of a couple, rehearsing Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman", whose relationship begins to fall apart after they rent an apartment from a fellow performer unaware it was previously inhabited by a prostitute.

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