Navid Khonsari

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Navid Khonsari
Navid Khonsari.tif
Khonsari in 2014
Born1970 (age 50–51)[1]
Alma materUniversity of British Columbia
Vancouver Film School
OccupationCEO, Creator of 1979 Revolution: Black Friday
OrganizationiNK Stories
Spouse(s)Vassiliki Bessie Khonsari
Awards[Winner Tribeca Film Festival Storyscapes, BAFTA Nomination, Winner Facebook Game of Year, D.I.C.E Spirit Award nomination, Best Director, Best Independent Game (DICE’s Academy of Interactive Sciences), Grand Jury Prize (Indiecade) and Best Meaningful Play (International Mobile Game Awards), New York Game Critics Awards for Best Game of the Year, Best Indie Game and Best Writing]
WebsiteCompany Website

Navid Khonsari (Persian: نوید خونساری‎) (born 1970) is a Canadian video game, virtual/mixed reality, film and graphic novel creator, writer, director and producer.[2]

Early life[edit]

Khonsari was born in Montreal, Quebec, and was raised in his homeland Iran until 10.[2] He left for Canada after the 1979 Revolution with his family.[2] He graduated from the University of British Columbia and the Vancouver Film School.


Khonsari broke onto the gaming scene with his work on Grand Theft Auto III and Max Payne when he joined Rockstar Games in 2000.[2] His first short film was titled Arcade Angels, which focused on video game burnouts who robbed a video rental store in an attempt to open an arcade. He wrote and produced The Contract, his first film with Billy Dee Williams.

During his 5 years at Rockstar Games Khonsari worked on Grand Theft Auto III, Vice City, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Max Payne, Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne, Midnight Club II, Manhunt, Red Dead Revolver, Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition, The Warriors, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories and Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories.[3]

In 2006, he left Rockstar Games and has since worked on a number of games including Alan Wake and Homefront.[2] He met his wife, Vassiliki, while directing the award-winning documentary Pindemonium. He co-founded iNK Stories and produced another documentary, "Pulling John", which premiered at South by Southwest. iNK Stories is presently completing a graphic novel titled Bedouin, and in 2016 launched 1979 Revolution: Black Friday.[4]

Khonsari often speaks and lectures on the convergence of technology and storytelling to incite empathy, challenge stereotypes of within mass media --- at venues such as Sundance, Hot Docs, DICE, Games For Change, FoST, Game Developers Conference (GDC), White House, Canadian Embassy, SXSW, VIEWS, NY Film Festival, UN and universities including Princeton, SCAD, Columbia, Northwestern. Khonsari is an advisor and fellow of the New Frontier Lab at the Sundance Institute and recipient of support from Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, IFP and Made in NY.

The Canadian Band Our Lady Peace borrowed Naveed's name for their debut album and the song of the same name as the lead singer, Raine Maida, went to Ridley College School with Naveed in St. Catherines, Ontario Canada.



  1. ^ CNN Archived 13 August 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b c d e f g مصاحبه با هنرمندان: نوید خونساری [Interview with artists: Navid Khonsari] (in Persian). October 2009.
  3. ^ Wired
  4. ^ Smith, Adam (5 April 2016). "Tales Of Tehran: 1979 Revolution – Black Friday Out Now". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Archived from the original on 25 April 2016. Retrieved 25 April 2016.

External links[edit]