The Recess

130 International Selections, 30 Nominations, 22 Awards.

17-year-old Sahar is determined to watch her favorite soccer team play for the league championship. Barred from attending sports events as a woman, Sahar disguises herself as a boy with the help of her friends. Things take a tragic turn when Sahar’s disguise is uncovered.
Inspired by true events, "The Recess" explores gender oppression in Iranian society.

Top Selections:
— Festival Internacional De Cine De Lebu (Oscar Qualifying Festival) · Edition: 21 · 2021
— Festival de Cine Global de Santo Domingo (Accredited by FIAPF) · Edition: 14 · 2022
— Festival Internacional de Cine de Cartagena (FICC) (Accredited by FIAPF) · Edition: 50 · 2021
— Elche International Independent Film Festival (Goya Awards Qualifying) · Edition: 45 · 2022
— Festival de Cortometrajes K-LIDOSCOPI (Goya Awards Qualifying) · Edition: 11 · 2022
— SPORT MOVIES & TV – 40 MILANO INTERNATIONAL FICTS FEST · Edition: 40 · 2022
— Festival of Nations · Edition: 50 · 2022
— Festival de Cine de Alicante (Goya Awards Qualifying) · Edition: 18 · 2021
— Semana de Cine de Lugo · Edition: 43 · 2021
— Curtas Festival do Imaxinario · Edition: 49 · 2021
— Festival Internazionale del Cinema di Salerno · Edition: 75 · 2021
— Almería International Film Festival (FICAL 2021) · Edition: 21 · 2021

  • Navid Nikkhah Azad
    Director
  • Navid Nikkhah Azad
    Writer
  • Navid Nikkhah Azad
    Producer
  • Delia Guerra Parra
    Producer
  • Mojan Kordi
    Key Cast
    "Sahar"
  • Reyhaneh Nabiyan
    Key Cast
    "Tahoora"
  • Niloofar Shokouhinia
    Key Cast
    "Aida"
  • Ghazal Khalili
    Key Cast
    "Sara"
  • Behrouz Badrouj
    Director of Photography
  • Vahid Nikkhah Azad
    Editing by
  • Mikhail Shmatenko
    Original Music by
  • Saman Shahamat
    Sound editing & mixing by
  • Ehsan Afsharian
    Sound Supervisor
  • Mona Ramezani
    Art Director
  • Sara Bolboli
    Makeup Designer
  • Negar Nikkhah Azad
    Still Photographer
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    «زنگ تفریح»
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Genres:
    Short, Drama, Narrative, Fiction, Human Rights, Politics, Youth, Women, Sports
  • Runtime:
    11 minutes 40 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    March 24, 2021
  • Production Budget:
    10,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    Spain
  • Country of Filming:
    Iran, Islamic Republic of
  • Language:
    English, Persian
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital 4K
  • Aspect Ratio:
    1.85:1
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
  • Oxford Film Festival · Edition: 18 · 2021
    Oxford
    United States
    March 24, 2021
    Winner - Best Narrative Short
  • Living Skies Student Film Festival · Edition: 33 · 2021
    Regina
    Canada
    March 4, 2021
    International Premiere
    Winner - Best Performance
  • Festival Internacional De Cine De Lebu (Oscar Qualifying Festival) · Edition: 21 · 2021
    Santiago
    Chile
    March 13, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Garden State Film Festival · Edition: 19 · 2021
    Asbury Park
    United States
    March 24, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Humboldt International Film Fest · Edition: 54 · 2021
    Arcata
    United States
    April 22, 2021
    Nominated for Best Narrative
  • The Johns Hopkins Film Festival · Edition: 24 · 2021
    Baltimore
    United States
    April 18, 2021
    Winner - Best Narrative Short
  • Festival de Cine de Alicante · Edition: 18 · 2021
    Alicante
    Spain
    Official Selection
  • Vox Feminae Festival · Edition: 15 · 2021
    Zagreb
    Croatia
    May 20, 2021
    Official Selection
  • River Film Festival · Edition: 15 · 2021
    Porta Portello
    Italy
    July 14, 2021
    Italian Premiere
    Official Selection
  • San Francisco Frozen Film Festival · Edition: 15 · 2021
    San Francisco
    United States
    July 14, 2021
    CA Premiere
    Winner - Best Dramatic Short Film
  • Kimera International Film Festival · Edition: 19 · 2021
    Termoli
    Italy
    July 14, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Ischia Global Film Festival · Edition: 19 · 2021
    Ischia
    Italy
    July 18, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Festival de Cine de Calzada de Calatrava · Edition: 8 · 2021
    Ciudad Real
    Spain
    August 12, 2021
    Nominated For Best Short Film
  • Salento International Film Festival · Edition: 18 · 2021
    Tricase
    Italy
    September 7, 2021
    Official Selection
  • IndieFEST Film Awards · Edition: 12 · 2021
    La Jolla, CA
    United States
    August 10, 2021
    Winner - Award of Excellence
  • Festival de Cine Estudiantil FENACIES · Edition: 11 · 2021
    Montevideo
    Uruguay
    September 6, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Nevada City Film Festival (NCFF) · Edition: 21 · 2021
    Nevada City (CA)
    United States
    September 3, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Adana Golden Boll Film Festival · Edition: 28 · 2021
    Adana
    Turkey
    September 18, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Visioni Corte Short Film Festival · Edition: 10 · 2021
    Gaeta, Lazio
    Italy
    September 18, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Semana de Cine de Lugo · Edition: 43 · 2021
    Lugu
    Spain
    September 22, 2021
    Official Selection
  • FECISO · Festival de Cine Social de Castilla-la Mancha · Edition: 18 · 2021
    Torrijos
    Spain
    October 1, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Progeny Short Film Festival · Edition: 18 · 2021
    Blacksburg, VA
    United States
    October 2, 2021
    Winner - Best International Short Film
  • Chesapeake Film Festival · Edition: 14 · 2021
    Easton
    United States
    October 3, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Crossroads International Short Film Festival · Edition: 15 · 2021
    Istanbul
    Turkey
    October 1, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Festival Internacional De Cine De Dosquebradas · Edition: 16 · 2021
    Dosquebradas
    Colombia
    September 29, 2021
    Winner - Best International Short Film
  • Sakarya International Short Film Festival · Edition: 7 · 2021
    Serdivan, Sakarya
    Turkey
    October 12, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Curtas Festival do Imaxinario · Edition: 49 · 2021
    Vilagarcia de Arousa
    Spain
    October 22, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Purbeck Film Festival · Edition: 24 · 2021
    Wareham, Dorset
    United Kingdom
    October 22, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Filmfest FrauenWelten · Edition: 21 · 2021
    Berlin
    Germany
    October 27, 2021
    Official Selection
  • FAMMA - Festival Audiovisual de Los Montes de MarÍa · Edition: 10 · 2021

    October 27, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Muestra Internacional de Cortometrajes Jujuy/Cortos · Edition: 20 · 2021
    San Salvador de Jujuy
    Argentina
    October 30, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Ojai Film Festival · Edition: 22 · 2021
    Oak View
    United States
    November 4, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Caminhos Film Festival · Edition: 27 · 2021
    Coimbra
    Portugal
    November 5, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Route 66 Film Festival · Edition: 20 · 2021
    Springfield, Illinois
    United States
    November 5, 2021
    Official Selection
  • East Lansing Film Festival (ELFF) · Edition: 24 · 2021
    East Lansing, Michigan
    United States
    November 12, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Jersey Shore Film Festival (JSFF) · Edition: 14 · 2021
    Deal, New Jersey
    United States
    November 15, 2021
    Winner - BEST OF FEST in the rest of the world
  • Festival Internacional De Cine De Granada - Premios Lorca · Edition: 2 · 2021

    Spain
    November 18, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Utopia Film Festival · Edition: 17 · 2021
    Greenbelt
    United States
    November 19, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Almería International Film Festival (FICAL 2021) · Edition: 21 · 2021
    Almeria
    Spain
    November 19, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Festival Internazionale del Cinema di Salerno · Edition: 75 · 2021
    Salerno
    Italy
    November 22, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Festival Internacional de Cine de Cartagena (FICC) · Edition: 50 · 2021
    Cartagena
    Spain
    November 24, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Social Film Festival Artelesia · Edition: 13 · 2021
    Benevento
    Italy
    November 24, 2021
    Official Selection
  • IPSMF (International Photography and Short Movie Festival) · Edition: 5 · 2021
    West Java, Indonesia
    Indonesia
    November 25, 2021
    Winner - Best Fiction Film
  • Sarno Film Festival · Edition: 11 · 2021
    Sarno
    Italy
    November 27, 2021
    Winner - Honorable Mention
  • PrideTime! Festival Internacional de Cine Diverso de Canarias · Edition: 13 · 2021
    Santa Cruz de Tenerife
    Spain
    December 2, 2021
    Official Selection
  • 16 Festival Audiovisual Comunicurtas · Edition: 16 · 2021
    Campina Grande, Paraíba
    Brazil
    December 3, 2021
    Official Selection
  • JAYU's Human Rights Film Festival · Edition: 10 · 2021
    Toronto, Ontario
    Canada
    December 3, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Shockfest Film Festival · Edition: 13 · 2021

    United States
    December 10, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Festival Internacional La Mirada Tabú · Edition: 8 · 2021
    Zaragoza
    Spain
    December 11, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Veracruz World Film Festival · Edition: 10 · 2021
    Veracruz
    Mexico
    December 15, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Asti International Film Festival · Edition: 11 · 2021
    Asti
    Italy
    December 14, 2021
    Official Selection
  • CityBlue Films Awards · Edition: 5 · 2021
    Alicante
    Spain
    December 17, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Festival de Internacional Cinema da Fronteira · Edition: 12 · 2021
    Bagé
    Brazil
    December 17, 2021
    Official Selection
  • Festival internacional Signes de Nuit · Edition: 19 · 2021
    Lisboa
    Portugal
    December 26, 2021
    Winner - Edward Snowden Award
  • Festival de Cine Global de Santo Domingo (FIAPF accredited Festival) · Edition: 14 · 2022
    Santo Domingo
    Dominican Republic
    January 24, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Spokane International Film Festival SpIFF) · Edition: 22 · 2022
    Spokane
    United States
    February 4, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Jacksonville Film Festival (JFF) · Edition: 15 · 2022
    Jacksonville, Florida
    United States
    February 4, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Common Good International Film Festival · Edition: 20 · 2022
    Salem, OR
    United States
    February 12, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Digital Grifix Film Awards · Edition: 8 · 2022
    Montreal, Quebec
    Canada
    March 1, 2022
    Winner: Best Cinematography, Best Original Score, Best Sound Design, Best Producer
  • Watersprite Film Festival · Edition: 13 · 2022
    Cambridge
    United Kingdom
    March 4, 2022
    Nominated for Best Social Impact
  • Green Bay Film Festival · Edition: 12 · 2022
    Green Bay
    United States
    March 5, 2022
    Official Selection
  • SPE Media Festival · Edition: 27 · 2022
    Cleveland
    United States
    March 6, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Gasparilla International Film Festival · Edition: 15 · 2022
    Tampa, FL
    United States
    March 12, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival de Cinema Estudantil de Guaíba · Edition: 19 · 2022
    GUAíBA, Rio Grande do Sul
    Brazil
    March 20, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Cortos Por La Igualdad · Edition: 13 · 2022
    Valencia
    Spain
    March 24, 2022
    Winner - Special Mention
  • Media Film Festival · Edition: 15 · 2022
    Media, PA
    United States
    March 31, 2022
    Official Selection
  • SHORT to the Point · Edition: 14 · 2022
    Târgu Mureș
    Romania
    April 11, 2022
    Nominated for Best Narrative Short
  • FILUMS International Film Festival · Edition: 11 · 2022
    Lahore, Punjab
    Pakistan
    March 29, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Censurados Film Festival · Edition: 8 · 2022
    Lima
    Peru
    April 2, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Poppy Jasper International Film Festival (PJIFF) · Edition: 15 · 2022
    Morgan Hill, CA
    United States
    April 6, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Dawson City International Short Film Festival · Edition: 23 · 2022
    Dawson City, Yukon
    Canada
    April 14, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival La Fila de Cortometrajes · Edition: 26 · 2022
    Valladolid
    Spain
    April 25, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Beausoleil Côte d'Azur International FICTS Festival du Cinéma Sportif · Edition: 6 · 2022
    Nice
    France
    May 10, 2022
    Winner - Best Film
  • Bengal International Short Film Festival · Edition: 7 · 2022
    Kolkata
    India
    May 15, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Fastnet Film Festival · Edition: 14 · 2022
    Schull, Co. Cork
    Ireland
    May 25, 2022
    Official Selection
  • GwangHwaMun International Short Film Festival · Edition: 20 · 2022

    Korea, Republic of
    May 24, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Digital Gate International Film Festival · Edition: 25 · 2022
    Annaba
    Algeria
    May 25, 2022
    Winner - Special Mention
  • Reto Por El Mundo (Erronka Munduan) · Edition: 1 · 2022
    San Sebastián
    Spain
    June 3, 2022
    Official Selection
  • MED-LIMES, "Ai Confini del Mediterraneo" · Edition: 5 · 2022
    Salerno, Campania
    Italy
    June 4, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Balinale—Bali Film Festival · Edition: 15 · 2022
    SANUR, BALI
    Indonesia
    June 10, 2022
    Nominated for Best Short Film
  • FECIBogotá - International Independent Film Fair of Bogotá · Edition: 7 · 2022
    Bogotá
    Colombia
    June 17, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Tracce Cinematografiche Film Fest · Edition: 11 · 2022
    Nettuno, Roma
    Italy
    June 28, 2022
    Nominated for Best Social Short Film
  • International Alexandria Short Film Festival · Edition: 8 · 2022
    Alexandria
    Greece
    June 29, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Social World Film Festival · Edition: 12 · 2022
    Vico Equense, Napoli
    Italy
    July 3, 2022
    Winner - Best Screenplay
  • Civitanova Film Festival · Edition: 8 · 2022
    Civitanova Marche
    Italy
    July 12, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Muestra Internacional De Cortometraje Solidario De Ciudad Real · Edition: 5 · 2022
    Ciudad Real
    Spain
    July 15, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Elche International Independent Film Festival (Goya Awards Qualifying) · Edition: 45 · 2022
    Elche, Alicante
    Spain
    July 21, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Milazzo Film Festival · Edition: 7 · 2022
    Milazzo, Messina
    Italy
    July 22, 2022
    Winner - L'OTTAVA ISOLA Award
  • Woods Hole Film Festival · Edition: 31 · 2022
    Woods Hole, MA
    United States
    July 31, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival Internacional De Cortometrajes Luna de Cortos · Edition: 9 · 2022
    Riego de la Vega, León
    Spain
    August 6, 2022
    Nominated for Best Film
  • Islantilla Cinefórum · Edition: 15 · 2022
    Islantilla
    Spain
    August 11, 2022
  • Corto di Sera · Edition: 11 · 2022
    Sicilia
    Italy
    August 12, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival Internacional de Cine de Quito (FICQ) · Edition: 7 · 2022
    Quito
    Ecuador
    August 13, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Nyack International Film Festival · Edition: 10 · 2022
    Nyack, NY
    United States
    August 14, 2022
    Semi-Finalist
  • Curta O Gênero · Edition: 13 · 2022
    Fortaleza
    Brazil
    August 20, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Norte de Santander International Film Festival· Edition: 5 · 2022
    Cucuta, Norte de Santander
    Colombia
    September 5, 2022
    Official Selection
  • The Serbest International Film Festival · Edition: 3 · 2022
    Kishinev
    Moldova, Republic of
    September 7, 2022
    Semi - Finalist
  • Vox Popular Media Arts Festival · Edition: 18 · 2022
    Thunder Bay, ON
    Canada
    September 8, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival De Cine: Infancia Y Adolescencia (FESTICINE) · Edition: 13 · 2022
    Bogotá
    Colombia
    September 7, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Garofano Rosso FIlm Festival· Edition: 11 · 2022
    Forme, Aq
    Italy
    September 7, 2022
    Official Selection
  • International Film Festival - El Cine Suma Paz · Edition: 1 · 2022
    Bogotá
    Colombia
    September 10, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival Kratkog Metra · Edition: 1 · 2022
    Novigrad, Istria
    Croatia
    September 16, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Kursaal Film Festival San Sebastián · Edition: 3 · 2022
    San Sebastián (Gipuzkoa)
    Spain
    September 20, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Corto Creativo Short Film Festival · Edition: 5 · 2022
    Tijuana, Baja California 22104 Mexico
    Mexico
    September 21, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival of Nations · Edition: 50 · 2022
    Weyregg
    Austria
    September 21, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Semana por la Soberanía Audiovisual · Edition: 9 · 2022
    Buenos Aires
    Argentina
    September 23, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Footcandle Film Festival · Edition: 8 · 2022
    Hickory, NC
    United States
    September 22, 2022
    Official Selection
  • FARCUME: Festival Internacional de Curtas-Metragens de Faro · Edition: 12 · 2022
    Faro, Algarve
    Portugal
    September 24, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Social Justice Film Festival · Edition: 10 · 2022
    Seattle, WA
    United States
    September 28, 2022
    Official Selection
  • 𝗇𝗎𝗄𝗁𝗎𝖿𝖾𝗌𝗍· Edition: 7 · 2022
    New York
    United States
    October 1, 2022
    Semi-Finalist
  • Festival Internacional de Cine de la No-Violencia Activa (FICNOVA) · Edition: 6 · 2022

    October 3, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Goa Short Film Festival · Edition: 9 · 2022

    India
    October 9, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Monstrale Festival · Edition: 8 · 2022
    Halle
    Germany
    October 10, 2022
    Official Selection
  • The NGO International Film Festival · Edition: 2 · 2022
    Nairobi
    Kenya
    October 19, 2022
    Official Selection
  • “FIDEMA” (Festival Internacional de las Emociones en Argentina) · Edition: 4 · 2022
    córdoba
    Argentina
    October 4, 2022
    Official Selection
  • FICCS - Festival Internacional de Cortos de la Cuenca del Salado · Edition: 13 · 2022
    Rauch, Buenos Aires
    Argentina
    October 7, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Cortogenial, Festival de Cine y Cortometrajes Puente-Genil · Edition: 13 · 2022
    Puente Genil, Córdoba
    Spain
    October 10, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Sedicicorto International Film Festival · Edition: 19 · 2022
    Forli
    Italy
    October 12, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival de Cortometrajes K-LIDOSCOPI (Goya Awards Qualifying) · Edition: 11 · 2022
    CULLERA, VALENCIA
    Spain
    October 13, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Chania Film Festival · Edition: 10 · 2022
    Chania, Crete
    Greece
    October 20, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Sharjah Film Platform · Edition: 5 · 2022
    Sharjah
    United Arab Emirates
    October 22, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Festival Internacional De Cine Infantil Y Juvenil, Calibélula · Edition: 6 · 2022
    Cali
    Colombia
    October 25, 2022
    Official Selection
  • CreaSport · Edition: 5 · 2022
    Lorca, Murcia
    Spain
    October 29, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Colortape International Film Festival · Edition: 6 · 2022
    Brisbane
    Australia
    November 4, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Student World Impact Film Festival · Edition: 2 · 2022
    Paramus, New Jersey
    United States
    November 10, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Marano Ragazzi Spot Festival · Edition: 25 · 2022
    Marano di Napoli, Naples
    Italy
    November 21, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Kurzfilmfestival Kufstein · Edition: 5 · 2022
    Kufstein, Tirol
    Germany
    November 24, 2022
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Navid Nikkhah Azad

Navid Nikkhah Azad (نوید نیکخواه آزاد) is an Iranian acclaimed film director known for “The Recess”.

His short films were selected and screened in more than 300 international film festivals including a number of FIAPF-accredited, OSCAR, BAFTA, and Goya Awards qualifying film festivals around the world.

He’s earned 17 awards and 40 nominations in international film festivals.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

As tragic and heart-breaking is the self-immolation and death of Sahar Khodayari, her departure serves as deep sorrow which penetrates into our hearts and starts living inside our soul.

As part of a society, and above all as a human, I can’t stop thinking about the dimensions of this very tragedy, be it social or spiritual or else, it deeply affects our lives down to every core and cell.
However, I’d like to think of Blue Girl as an individual soul, with a deep character within.

What made me think of it as a subject for a movie, and a serious concern as a filmmaker, was that the truth about Sahar Khodayari, her life story, who she was, and what he did, was majorly disrupted by the government and the media. She was made a person with no “past”.

So I decided to make this film about “Blue Girl” to give her a “past” she deserved and “truth” to who she was and what she did.