Leila Hatami apologises for Cannes kiss after angering religious authorities
The Iranian actress has sent a letter of apology to Iran's cinema organisation
Iranian actress Leila Hatami has apologised for kissing the Cannes film festival president, Gilles Jacob, on the cheek, an act which angered religious authorities in Iran and saw calls for her to be publicly flogged.
Ms Hatami, currently a juror at Cannes, was photographed giving Mr Jacob, 83, a peck on the cheek at a ceremonial event last week.
In the Iranian interpretation of sharia law, a woman is not allowed to have any physical contact with a man outside of her own family.
She was condemned by the Islamic Republic for presenting “a bad image of Iranian women” to the world and a group of Hizbullah Students filed a complaint with the judiciary demanding that Ms Hatami be punished, the Tasnim news website reported. The maximum sentence is 50 lashes.
“I am so sorry for hurting the feelings of some people," she wrote in a letter to Iran's cinema organisation, according to news.com.au.
"My preemptive action of hand shaking was fruitless.
"Although I am embarrassed to give these explanations, I had no choice but to go into details for those who could not understand the inevitable situation that I was stuck in."
Mr Jacob defended the kiss as typical way of greeting people in the West on Twitter. He tweeted: “I kissed Mrs Hatami on the cheek. At that moment, for me she represented all Iranian cinema, then she became herself again.”
Ms Hatami, who lives in Iran, rose to fame following her appearance in Oscar-winning film A Separation, directed by Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi.
READ MORE: LEILA HATAMI ANGERS ISLAMIC AUTHORITIES
- 1 Frank Lampard's face drops when Holly Willoughby introduces him as a 'Man City legend'
- 2 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 The Visit: Trailer for M Night Shyamalan's latest horror film is terrifying
- 5 9/11: Iranian General accuses US of organising September 11 terror attacks
General Election 2015: Tories sack candidate who said she would never support 'the Jew' Ed Miliband
9/11: Iranian General accuses US of organising September 11 terror attacks
General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
Manny Pacquiao begs Indonesia president to spare life of drug smuggler Mary Jane Veloso about to be executed
Yazidi sex slaves undergoing surgery to 'restore virginity' after being raped by Isis militants
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
HSBC review into moving headquarters from UK 'underway'
£50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager Shared Services - Uxbridge, Stock...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join one of...
£18000 - £20000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Assistant (Events busi...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This privately-owned company designs and manuf...