Promotional poster for film “Iranium”
JERUSALEM – The Iranian government is “afraid” of a new documentary investigating Iran’s nuclear program and is attempting to stifle free speech, the film’s director charged.
A screening of “Iranium” was canceled yesterday amid threats to the event and a report of protest from the Iranian embassy.
“Iranium is quickly turning into the film Iran’s leaders don’t want you to see,” Alex Traiman, the film’s director, told WND.
“That Iranian leaders would try to stifle free speech in North America perfectly displays the distinct difference in values instilled in Iran versus the West,” said Traiman.
“Attempting to cancel the screening shows that the Iranian regime is afraid of the film’s content and the repercussions they may face from Americans and Canadians following its release. It also goes to show how fragile the current leadership structure in Iran actually is,” Traiman added.
Canadian police today said they were searching for a man they believe hand-delivered two threatening letters that led to the cancellation of Iranium’s screening yesterday at the country’s National Library and Archives.
It was the suspicious packages that prompted the entire shutdown of the library building, which is just steps from the Canadian parliament and Supreme Court.
“Once we started to receive threats from the public and threats of public protest, we deemed the risk associated with the event was a little too high,” library spokeswoman Pauline Portelance told Canada’s National Post.
Police say a man showed up at the library yesterday hours before the screening to drop off a plastic bag that contained two envelopes with white powder inside. The man fled the scene. Police say the powder was harmless.
The incident followed scores of public complaints against the film’s screening, reportedly including a protest from the Iranian embassy.
“We received a series of threats and complaints from the public, varying members of the public, significant enough to warrant cancelling the event,” Portelance said.
Portelance said the decision was made to ensure the safety of the public and staff and to ensure the protection of the archives themselves.
“Iranium” is narrated by Iranian actress and Academy Award nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo.
The film purports to document the development of Iran’s suspected nuclear program, beginning with the Islamic Revolution of 1979 and the ideology installed by Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini. It accuses the Iranian leadership of using terror as a tool of policy, beginning with the 444-day seizure of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, through Iran’s suspected insurgent actions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The film also details the Iranian crackdown on protestors following last year’s presidential elections and outlines possible scenarios the greater Middle East and the Western world may face should Iran cross the nuclear threshold.