The nude photo of Golshifteh Farahani published by Madame Le Figaro magazine has attracted a wave of visitors to her Facebook page from Iran and the Middle East, The Telegraph reported.
The Paris-based actress left Iran last year in protest against restrictive Islamic codes that the Iranian cinema industry has to follow under Ahmadinejad’s conservative cultural policies.
Now she said the government has sent a communiqué telling her not to travel back to her homeland.
“I was told by a Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guide official that Iran does not need any actors or artists. You may offer your artistic services somewhere else,” Farahani said.
Farahani appeared along Leonardo Di Caprio in the Hollywood film Body of Lies as a nurse who helps an injured American secret agent to recover to carry out his mission in a Muslim country.
The publication of the photo coincides with the Iranian film A Separation being awarded a Golden Globe as the Best Foreign Film of the Year and a government crackdown on the industry, which has seen the authorities shut the House of Cinema institute in Tehran.
Golshifteh has appeared in many of the films made by Asghar Farhadi, the director of A Separation, which has also been nominated for an Oscar this year.
In a few hours after the photo was published Farahani received thousands of comments from her fans on her Facebook page, with some blaming her for “indecency” and many admiring her for “the courage to remove a taboo among the women in the Muslim countries”.