Born in Tehran, holder of PhD in French Literature, Katayoon Shahabi started her work in 1984 as a film promoter in Farabi Cinema Foundation (FCF), which had been founded to support the infrastructure of Iranian films. The Foundation had an important role in introduction of Iranian cinema to the world.
In 1994, she was invited to launch Cima Media International. In CMI, in addition to promoting TV programs, she was involved in co-production of many documentaries and feature films that have been successful worldwide such as Dance of Dust and Don by Abolfazl Jalili.
In 2001, Shahabi launched her own company, Sheherazad Media International (SMI), which in a short time became the most important private company active in worldwide distribution of Iranian cinema and co-productions with foreign companies. Her company introduced to the world films from acclaimed directors such as Rakhshan Bani-Etemad, Asghar Farhadi, Mohammad Rasoulof, Mania Akbari, Saman Salour, etc.
Today Shahabi is an Executive Board Member of the Documentary and Fiction Producers Guild which has led her to produce a minimum of one to two films per year in order to create films that bring into notice promising new directors and intriguing films to the world.
Her recent documentaries as producer are: Unwelcome in Tehran, 21 Days and Me, Reluctant Bachelor, Moving Up (Best First Film in FID Marseille 2011) and Nessa (Honorable Mention award at Hot Docs 2012).