Amir Naderi is one of Iran’s most internationally acclaimed directors, and he is considered to be among the central figures in the nation’s postrevolutionary film industry. Paradoxically, his choice to leave Iran in hopes of expanded artistic opportunities in the United States has cost him the critical and scholarly recognition bestowed on his former compatriots Abbas Kiarostami and Mohsen Makhmalbaf. This essay seeks to address this imposed cultural exile by analyzing Naderi’s work and situating him as an important diasporic Iranian filmmaker. Films discussed include The Runner (1985), the Manhattan Trilogy (1993–2002), Sound Barrier (2005), and Vegas: Based on a True Story (2008). The analysis foregrounds continuities of displacement and confinement between Naderi’s films about Iran and his subsequent portraits of the United States. The journeys and paths undertaken by Naderi’s protagonists are explored as reflections of a diasporic filmmaker who left the constraints of one home for the limitations of another.

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