'The Sea Ahead' is the feature debut of Ely Dagher, who has won the Palm d’Or award for Best Short Film.
MAD Solutions has released the official Arab world poster for the Lebanese film The Sea Ahead, by Ely Dagher, a few weeks before the film’s Arab world premiere at the Feature Narrative Competition of the fifth El Gouna Film Festival.
The poster draws on the feelings of the heroine, played by Manal Issa, highlighting the state of dispersion and anxious limbo that the Lebanese society suffers from.
The Sea Ahead is scheduled to have two screenings at El Gouna Film Festival; October 20 at Festival Plaza at 9:45 PM and October 21 at Sea Cinema 1 at 8:30 PM. The film’s second screening will be followed by a Q&A session with the director and a number of the film’s cast.
Directed and written by Ely Dagher, The Sea Ahead stars Manal Issa, Yara Abou Haidar, Rabih El Zaher and Roger Azar. The film is produced by Andolfi (Arnaud Dommerc) in association with Beachside and co-produced by Abbout Productions, Wrong Men, Beaver and Beaver. The film is distributed in the Arab world by MAD Solutions.
The film revolves around a young woman that walks out of the Beirut airport alone and makes her way back home to her parents’ house in the middle of the night. Having been abroad and out of touch for a while, Jana seems to be leaving a bad experience behind and taking refuge. Haunting pressures to fit back into the family dynamics as well as revealing details of her life abroad weigh heavy on her. Feeling cornered, her fears and anxieties resurface, leading her to reconnect and find solace in another part of her Beirut life that she had forsaken. A life that is for her as familiar and foreign now as it ever was.
Previously landing its world premiere at the 74th Cannes Film Festival’s Directors’ Fortnight, The Sea Ahead marks the feature debut of Ely Dagher who has won the Palme d’Or award for his short film Waves 98, making him the first Lebanese film to ever receive such an award.
The Sea Ahead received numerous awards during its development, including a cash award of € 5,000 to support Best Film in Post-production at the Final Cut In Venice workshop; CineGouna platform’s award for Best Project in Development Phase and a financial award from Drosos Foundation. Additionally, it received grants from Doha Film Institute, and AFAC-Arab Funds For Arts and Culture.