November 22, 1969
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An inspiring and rebellious figure, writer and director Marjane Satrapi became well known when her autobiographical graphic novel Persepolis was published in France in 2000 to immense critical acclaim. The story chronicled Satrapi's youth in her native Iran, where her affluent and politically active family spoke out against the nation's last Shah and supported Marxist ideals. The book also recounted Satrapi's experiences after the Iranian Revolution left a strict authoritarian regime in place, eventually leading to her own beloved uncle's execution for his political beliefs. Satrapi became increasingly rebellious following the event, listening to music banned by the regime and breaking "modesty" laws. After attending boarding school in Vienna, Satrapi returned to Iran and graduated from Islamic Azad University with a master's degree in visual communication. Later, she moved to France and married Swedish national Mattia Ripa. Satrapi also began an important professional relationship at this time with comic artist David Beuchard, who helped Satrapi develop her skills. In 2000, she wrote and illustrated the first of her four-part Persepolis series to major acclaim and in 2003, the series was released in English as well. The following year, Satrapi published another acclaimed graphic novel, Chicken with Plums. In 2007, Satrapi teamed with French director Vincent Paronnaud to co-direct an animated film adaptation of Persepolis. The film was a massive success in France as well as in the United States, where it was nominated for an Academy Award. In 2011, she and Paronnaud re-teamed to produce a live-action adaptation of her book Chicken with Plums. By the following year, Satrapi was ready to direct on her own, bringing her own screenplay to life with "The Gang of the Jotas" (2012). Having established herself as a filmmaker in her own right, Satrapi's next project was the American comedy "The Voices" (2014) starring Ryan Reynolds. It was the director's first film for which she had no role in the script.