An Iranian man who lived at Paris airport for 18 years has died.
From a small area of Roissy Charles de Gaulle Airport, Mehran Karimi Nasseri made his home in 1988.
Nasiri’s experience inspired the famous movie The Terminalproduced in 2004, starring Tom Hanks.
An airport official told AFP that Nasseri eventually got the right to live in France, but ended up returning to the airport a few weeks ago, where he died of natural causes.
Nasseri was born in 1945 in the Iranian province of Khuzestan, and traveled for the first time to Europe in search of his mother.
Nasseri spent a few years in Belgium after being expelled from countries such as the UK, the Netherlands and Germany for not having the correct immigration documents, then went to France, where he made passenger terminal 2F at the airport his home.
The Iranian man lived on an airport bench, surrounded by carts containing his accumulated possessions, he spent his days writing about his life in his notebook and reading books and newspapers.
His story caught international media attention and drew the attention of actor and director Steven Spielberg, who directed The Terminal, starring Hanks and Catherine Zeta-Jones.
After the film was shown, reporters flocked to speak with the man who was the inspiration for the Hollywood movie. At one point, Nasseri, who called himself “Sir Alfred”, was giving six interviews a day, Le Parisien reported.
Despite being granted refugee status and the right to remain in France in 1999, he remained at the airport until 2006, when he was taken to hospital for treatment, then lived in a hostel using money he made from the film, French newspaper Liberation reported.
An airport official said Nasseri returned to the airport a few weeks ago, where he lived until his death.
The official added that several thousand Euros were found in his possession.