Epsilon Spires, Brooks Library present screening of ‘The Kite Runner’

BRATTLEBORO-The Banned Books to Film series continues at Epsilon Spires, 190 Main St., on Sunday, April 21, with a screening of The Kite Runner, followed by a discussion led by Abdullah Hafizi and members of the artist collective The ArtLords.

Doors open at 5 p.m., and the film begins at 5:15. Free admission will be granted to those who bring their library card or a copy of the book. Free Afghan cuisine, created by Taza, will be offered after the screening. Dinner begins at 7:30 p.m.

The Kite Runner is a 2007 American film directed by Marc Forster with a screenplay by David Benioff, adapted from the 2003 novel of the same name by Khaled Hosseini. It tells the story of Amir, a well-to-do boy from the Wazir Akbar Khan district of Kabul who is tormented by the guilt of abandoning his friend Hassan. It was inspired by Hosseini learning through a 1999 news report that the Taliban had banned kite flying in Afghanistan, a restriction he found particularly cruel. It struck a personal chord for him, as he had grown up with the sport while living in Afghanistan.

The story is set against a backdrop of tumultuous events, from the fall of the monarchy in Afghanistan through the Soviet military intervention, the mass exodus of Afghan refugees to Pakistan and the United States, and the Taliban regime.

Though most of the film is set in Afghanistan, these parts were mostly shot in Kashgar in Xinjiang, China, due to the dangers of filming in Afghanistan at the time. The majority of the film's dialogue is in Dari Persian, with the remainder spoken in English and a few short scenes in Pashto and Urdu.

The film was a challenge to make as the cast and crew came from 28 countries and spoke 13 languages. Out of concern for the safety of the young actors in the film due to fears of violent reprisals to the sexual nature of some scenes in which they appear, the original release date for the film was pushed back six weeks.

The controversial scenes also resulted in the film being banned from cinemas and distribution in Afghanistan itself.

The film was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2007 and the film's score by Alberto Iglesias was nominated for Best Original Score at the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards. The book won the Alex Award from the American Library Association and the paperback was on the bestseller list for more than 240 weeks, and was No. 1 for four of those weeks.

For more information and reservations to attend the dinner, visit The Banned Books to Film series is a project of Epsilon Spires, the Brattleboro Literary Festival, and Brooks Memorial Library.

This Arts item was submitted to The Commons.

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