More than 50 French female artists from the worlds of cinema and music have symbolically cut their hair in a video campaign showing support for the ongoing protests in Iran calling for more freedom for women following the death of Mahsa Amini.
French actresses Isabelle Adjani, Berenice Bejo, Juliette Binoche, Laure Calamy, Marion Cotillard, Julie Gayet, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Isabelle Huppert and Alexandra Lamy were among those sharing images of themselves cutting off their hair.
The video, hashtagged #HairForFreedom, was posted on Instagram early on Wednesday morning.
Binoche kicks off the video, holding up her hair up high and then shearing a sizeable chunk off, declaring “For Freedom” in English.
The video ends with an image by French-Iranian artist director Marjane Satrapi, who tackled the issue of women’s rights in Iran in her award-winning graphic novel and feature adaptation Persepolis.
“Since Mahsa’s death on September 16, the Iranian people, led by women, have been protesting at the risk of their lives. These people only hope for access to the most essential freedoms. These women, these men, are asking for our support,” read a statement accompanying the video.
“Their courage and dignity oblige us [to act]. It is impossible not to denounce again and again this terrible repression. There have been dozens of deaths, including children. The arrests are swelling the number of prisoners already illegally held and too often tortured. We decided to answer the call that was thrown at us by cutting some of these locks.”
The initiative was instigated by international human rights lawyer Richard Sedillot in cooperation with top barristers Julie Couturier and Christiane Feral Schuhl.
The video campaign follows hot on the heels of an open letter on Tuesday signed by more than 1,000 figures from the world of French cinema supporting the protests in Iran.
Signatories included directors Catherine Corsini, Alice Diop, Audrey Diwan, Julia Ducournau, Eva Husson, Alice Winocour, Rebecca Zlotowski, Jacques Audiard, Nicolas Bedos, Bertrand Bonello, Dany Boon as well as Cannes delegate general Thierry Frémaux and industry figures such as Hengameh Panahi, Vincent Maraval and Alexandre Mallet-Guy.