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Khairy Beshara, Moussa Touré and Marwan Hamed to Helm Juries at the 3rd Edition of GFF

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El Gouna Film Festival returns stronger this year with its 3rd edition that glamorously kicked off last night, with the aim of showcasing a wide variety of films for a passionate and knowledgeable audience in the presence of the industry’s pioneers as judges.

Here are the categories of which film are competing in and the jury panel of each!

As was the case in its previous two editions, El Gouna Film Festival, in its 3 rd edition, brings together some of the most talented international and Arab filmmakers, film critics and experts to select the winning films in its three main competitions with the participation of acclaimed films by celebrated and influential directors, in addition to exciting and innovative films by emerging filmmakers, the process of selecting the award winners is indeed a challenging task.

 

The jury of the Feature Narrative Competition has the iconic Egyptian film director Khairy Beshara for president. Beshara has been active in the film industry since the 1970s and is considered one of the directors who redefined realism in Egyptian cinema, he is also one of the first Arab directors to venture into digital filmmaking in the late 1990s.

Among the members is award-winning director and producer Mai Masri, one of the pillars of Palestinian and Arab cinema; Nashen Moodley, the director of the Sydney Film Festival, who served in juries at San Sebastian, Busan, Toronto, Rotterdam, Durban and Tokyo film festivals; and Resul Pookutty, Asia’s most feted sound technician, winner of an Academy Award for Best Achievement in Sound Mixing; and Stas Tyrkin, film critic and artistic director of the Dvizheniye National Debut Film Festival and the Strelka Film Festival.

Mai Masri, Palestinian Filmmaker

The Feature Documentary Competition jury is headed by acclaimed Senegalese director, producer, screenwriter and actor Moussa Touré, founder of the Moussa Invite Festival in Senegal, which aims to promote African documentaries directed by African filmmakers. The jury members include award-winning director and producer Anne Aghion, who is a panelist and juror at film festivals including Cannes and IDFA; Ludmila Cvikova, who was a programmer at the International Film Festival Rotterdam for 15 years, and has cooperated with numerous international festivals; Talal Derki, a renowned Syrian film director, producer and screenwriter who was nominated for an Academy Award in 2019; award-winning Egyptian costume designer Nahed Nasrallah, who has worked with many legendary directors such as Youssef Chahine and Yousry Nasrallah.

The Short Film Competition jury is headed by prominent Egyptian director Marwan Hamed, who received numerous awards and honors for his feature films such as The Yacoubian Building (2006) and The Blue Elephant (2014). The jury also includes Colombian-Belgian film director and cinematographer Juanita Onzaga; as well as the director of the Tampere Film Festival, Jukka-Pekka Laakso, who has served as a jury member at numerous film festivals around the world.

In addition, two acclaimed figures from the Arab world are members of the Short Film Competition jury; Iraqi director, producer and screenwriter Mohamed Daradji, whose films have been selected for leading international film festivals; and Tunisian star Dorra Zarrouk, one of the leading actresses in Egypt and the Middle East who starred in more than 30 films, theater plays and TV series across the region.

Additionally, the 3 rd edition of El Gouna Film Festival welcomes the Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (NETPAC) jury, which will award one feature-length film by an Asian director from the GFF program. The NETPAC jury consists of Gulnara Abikeyeva, film critic and historian from Kazakhstan; Syrian-French film critic Nada Azhari; and Hasan Haddad, writer and film critic from Bahrain.

This year also marks GFF’s first time to host an International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) jury, who will award one feature-length Arab film from the lineup of the Festival. FIPRESCI jury members are Karsten Kastelan, journalist and film critic from Germany; Mervat Omar, film critic from Egypt; and Frédéric Ponsard, film critic from France.

Events

THE GOLDEN PARADE

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In a spectacular display of cultural revitalization and preservation, Egypt stunned the world with her Golden Parade. The royal procession rivaled those of  centuries past in extravagance and the awe it left in its wake. The official transference of 22 mummies, 18 pharaohs and four queens from The Egyptian museum in heart of Cairo to the next nucleus of Egyptian history and culture, The National Museum of Egyptian Civilization. This momentous event came to being after a year long preparation in which the efforts of key individuals led to an unparalleled display which captivated millions across the globe. The colossal effort behind the scenes owe its thanks to several companies and individuals.

The phenomenal production by Kokoro Agency heads Production Designer and Art Director Mohamed Attia and partner Shady Ezz, oversaw the process to ensure the visually distinct nature of the Golden Parade. Following the event Mohamed Attia “The happiness and pride of the people come from how we as Egyptians are capable. That we’re capable of meeting the international standard, with it being accomplished yesterday before the eyes of every Egyptian and the world.” This substantial work stands as an example of Egyptian creativity and attention to detail which Shady Ezz remarked “after a year and a half worth of preparation, I’m delighted with the domestic and international reception”. Having successfully captured the grandiosity and awe inspiring spectacle of the Ancient Egyptians Kokoro and everyone involved in the production of the Parade have forged work that has earned the pride of Egyptians everywhere.

The visual journey that was embarked upon by every viewer who witnessed the parade was one guided by the hand of DOP and Director Mazen El Motagawel. Responsible for the vision of the event, his efforts ensured a spectacle that offered viewers a unique glimpse into the past, which he says “will never be repeated in a lifetime”. Through intricate rehearsals and preparation, he ensured that every second that was viewed on air deserved to be cemented in the minds and hearts of Egyptians. The parade necessitated a delicate touch and a carefully orchestrated sequence of events, which presented substantial challenges which required an unmatched creativity to ensure such a vision comes to fruition. He stated that “the lighting design was extremely technically demanding regarding how to manage lighting on such a grand scale, especially the coordination between the parade and the visual elements”. Mazen El Motagawel’s work was complemented by Ahmed El Morsi’s remarkable directing and filming the retelling of ancient Egyptian history by prominent Egyptian actors as well as the official anthem by the acclaimed artist Mohamed Mounir. All theses elements came together to mark a new chapter in modern Egyptian history in which it solidifies its identity. One that embraces the legacy of its past and its optimistic path towards achieving its potential.

 

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Events

The Christmas Bazars and Festivities to Catch This Holiday

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Christmas festivities has already invaded most parts of Cairo and it’s our favorite season for a good reason! Anywhere you go, you can spot the festive decorations and stunning Christmas lights.

If Christmas IS your favorite holiday and you’re looking to make the best out of it, here are the best places to celebrate the holidays in! The following are the bazars to catch and the places with the most stunning winter vibes.

Walk of Cairo

Walk of Cairo is Zayed’s newest addition and it has it all! It has the vibes and the best entertainment anyone can ask for. They have Egypt’s first Museum of Illusions, so get ready to have your mind blown away. They have the nicest, massive decorations and they have lots of fun games!

Mall of Arabia

Mall of Arabia has done a wonderful job upping their game! The Park at Mall of Arabia has everything you need, from fun rides to carnival games during the weekdays and on weekends too. Just passing by the mall, you will be blinded with magnificent Christmas lights, so you can only imagine how it looks from the inside!

Downtown Katameya

Enjoy plenty of activities at Downtown Katameya including foam clouds that you can indeed float on! VR competitions with a number of of IRL prizes, and a selfie booth where you can have your picture taken on their Christmas tree!

Arkan Plaza

Arkan Plaza in Sheikh Zayed gives you the ultimate dining experience with the best decorations and a huge Christmas tree! Catch the festivities there while dining at one of their top notch restaurants.

Zed Park

It’s all about Christmas at Zed Park plus the fun games and rides that you most certainly don’t want to miss!

Let the festivities begin and the good time roll! Happy holidays everyone.

 

 

 

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Events

Christmas Concerts to be Held at Cairo and Alexandria Opera Houses

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Both Cairo and Alexandria Opera Houses are set to celebrate Christmas with three concerts and ballet shows to be held on the 10th, 13th and 14th of December.

The concerts will be all about festivities and Christmas spirit, by presenting a selection of well-known musicals and international songs that are being presented for the very first time. They’re being prepared by Amir Awad, Osama Ali, and Imad Adel, under the supervision of Magdy Saber.

The Cairo Opera Troupe will present three concerts and ballet shows designed by Armenia Kamel, supervised by art director Iman Mostafa and directed by Abdullah Saad.

Cairo Opera Orchestra and the Cairo Opera Choir will also participate in the concerts, also with the participation of art shows performed by members of the Cairo Opera Ballet.

The concerts in Cairo will be held at the Cairo Opera’s Grand Theater and the third concert will take place in the Sayed Darwish Theater at Alexandria Opera.

 

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