A poet is killed is a Canadian-Iranian feature documentary film about the life of Mohammad Mokhtari, a well known Iranian poet who was killed in the chain murders of Iran. Strangled to death, his body was found in the street in Tehran with a pen in his pocket. The film is an Iranian-Canadian feature documentary production about the life of an important poet who gave his life for freedom of speech. The chain murders of Iran were a series of 1988–98 murders and disappearances of certain Iranian intellectuals.
Mr. Mokhtari was an active member of the writers association of Iran. He had signed the statement of the 134 Iranian writers which demanded the removal of censorship in Iran for all artists. The text of 134 was secretly sent to Arthur Miller by the Iranian writers.
He was impressed and read the statement at the Pen International in Prague. Many Iranian writers were arrested, threatened to be killed and then some were blacklisted and murdered in the chain murders of Iran. The killings were meant to eliminate those who promoted freedom of speech and cultural openness in society.
A great portion of the documentary was shot secretly and independently in Iran. The other parts were shot in Canada and Germany with the exiled Iranian writers who were forced to leave Iran since they were blacklisted.
The film features some of the most important Iranian writers, precious archival footage from the past, and the family of Mr. Mokhtari.
The film is a social, political, historical, biographical and poetic testimony to one of the most important events in the history of Iran after the 1979 revolution.
The director Arsalan Baraheni has produced, directed and edited the feature documentary which also had its official selection and screening earlier this years in Human Rights Film Festival in Albania.