Navid Khonsari

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Navid Khonsari
Navid Khonsari.tif
Khonsari in 2014
Born1970 (age 51–52)[1]
NationalityIranian Canadian[2]
Alma materUniversity of British Columbia
Vancouver Film School
OccupationCEO, Creator of 1979 Revolution: Black Friday, writer, director, producer
OrganizationiNK Stories
SpouseVassiliki 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 an Iranian - 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 fled Iran as a political refugee to 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, where she acted as the cinematographer and producer of this feature, which aired on the Sundance Channel. Together, Navid and Vassiliki co-founded iNK Stories and produced another documentary, "Pulling John", which premiered at South by Southwest. iNK Stories, is an independent entertainment company that is recognized for its bold, original voice in titles such as their 2016 launched 1979 Revolution: Black Friday.[4]

1979 Revolution: Black Friday receiving industry's top honors including BAFTA, Facebook Game of the Year, DICE, Indiecade, NY Game Critics, Tribeca FF Storyscape, Lumiere and recognized by UNESCO as digital solution for peaceful conflict resolution - as a result Khonsari was politically exiled by the government of Iran - deemed a US spy. Khonsari's subsequent titles, also lauded as innovative breakthroughs that reframe the human experience, include HERO (site specific multi-sensory VR experience of civilian warfare in Syria) premiered at Sundance and Tribeca Film Festival winning the Storyscape Award for Best Immersive, Blindfold premiering at Sheffield, Fire Escape Tribeca Film Festival––and currently Who is Michael Sterling? and a slate of not yet announced video games, site specific immersive work and episodic.



  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 17 April 2016. Retrieved 25 April 2016.

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