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Rights sold to : Germany (Editions Moderne)

« Neyestani tackles the most frightening aspects of the Islamic Republic » Le Monde

« Told and drawn with a dazzling intelligence » L’Obs

« Edifying » Elle

« Neyestani depicts with brio a schizophrenic society » Télérama

The Spider of Mashhad
Mana Neyestani

Mana Neyestani delivers a stunning docu-drama about an Iranian serial killer in the early 2000s.

Based on video interviews made by two journalists close to Mana Neyestani, The Spider of Mashhad describes Saeed Hanaei’s story, a man who murdered sixteen prostitutes and/or drug addicted women for religious reasons. These events all happened in the holy city of Mashhad, in the north-east of Iran. All the victims were brought to his home and strangled, hence Hanaei’s nickname given by the media « The Spider Killer ».

Juggling between genuine interviews and fictional parts, Neyestani not only reveals the killer’s point of view, but the state of mind of his family, of the victims, and of the investigating judge as well. Mana Neyestani sheds lights on the rigorist religious ideas in this city, one of the most conservative of Iran, where part of the population protested in support of the killer after his arrest. Through this true story, Mana Neyestani describes a sick society in which the outcasts are not considered as humans.

Published in May 2017

17 X 24 cm, softcover
164 pages
b&w and colors

Mana Neyestani

Mana Neyestani was born in Tehran in 1973. He graduated as an architect but began his career in 1990 as a cartoonist and illustrator for many cultural, literary, economic and political magazines. With the rise of Iranian reformist newspapers in 1999 he became an editorial cartoonist.
Sidelined as a political cartoonist, Neyestani was forced to do children’s cartoons. One he did in 2006 led to his imprisonment and flight from the country. From 2007 to 2010 he lived in exile in Malaysia, doing cartoons for dissident Iranian websites worldwide. In the wake of the fraudulent election of 2009, his work has become an icon of defiance to the Iranian people. Neyestani has won numerous Iranian and international awards, most recently the 2010 CRNI Award for Courage. Since 2011, he lives in Paris, France with his wife. They are both refugees.