The fifth edition of El Gouna Film Festival will screen two Egyptian films 'Amira' and 'Back Home' on October 19.
During the sixth edition of the El Gouna Film Festival, O West, one of the integrated towns of Orascom Development, will organise a live screening of selected films participating in the festival.
The move is first-of-its-kind in the art and film festivals, which aims to support cinephiles who are unable to attend the festival in El Gouna.
The collaboration was announced during a ceremony attended by Intishal Al Timimi, Director of El Gouna Film Festival, Bushra Rozza, Co-founder and COO of GFF, and Tarek Kamel, CEO of O West. As part of the cooperation, activities will be organised for the CineGouna Platform from December 2021 to June 2022, including monthly lectures, workshops and bi-monthly events.
Tarek Kamel, CEO of O West, highlighted the importance of the El-Gouna Film Festival stemming from the richness of the films that are screened. For instance, this year, 75 films from 44 countries are participating since cinema is one of the most important media tools that shed light on social issues and challenges through documentaries and social films mirroring society and expressing its pressing issues. Through CineGouna Platform, the aim is to create a common language and dialogue with young people to serve as a bridge to enhance communication between global cultures.
Kamel added: “We seek to strengthen our role as a responsible investor to create an interactive platform that empowers young people making O West a cultural destination and an art hub in West Cairo. We are excited that starting next year, a live screening of selected films from the sixth edition of the festival will be organised in O West, as well as holding workshops, masterclasses for CineGouna Platform and bringing industry leaders and international filmmakers all together.”
Intishal Al Timimi, Director of El Gouna Film Festival, expressed his pride of the success experienced over the past five years, as the festival was able to prove its presence as a key festival among international film festivals in the Arab region.
In addition, the continuation of the activities of the CineGouna Platform will expand the circle of communication with young people interested in cinematic art and the opportunity to view distinguished content from the artistic and technical aspects.
Bushra Rozza, Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of El Gouna Film Festival stated: “El Gouna Film Festival, in its fifth edition, is screening significant films on an international level that are only two months old. The live screening of films at O West provides an opportunity for the largest number of cinephiles to learn about the new international cinematic art which reinforces Egypt’s position in cinematic art in the Arab world.”
The cooperation comes within the framework of O West’s sponsorship and support of El Gouna Film Festival since its launch, and in line with Orascom’s development strategy, which aims to achieve integration between its towns, especially the developmental and societal role that makes Orascom Development towns a beacon of art, culture and sports in Egypt and the Middle East.
On the other hand, El Gouna Film Festival will screen the Egyptian film, Amira, by Mohamed Diab, which competed at the 2021 Venice International Film Festival’s Orizzonti competition on October 19. The film stars Saba Mubarak, Ali Suliman, and Tara Abboud and will compete as part of GFF’s Feature Narrative Competition. El Gouna Conference and Culture Center will host the film’s screening, which will start at 6:30 PM.
Regarding the Feature Documentary Competition, the Egyptian film Back Home by Sara Shazli will have its International Premiere at El Gouna Conference and Culture Center at 9:15 PM with its red carpet taking place at 8:30 PM.
The second edition of Sunbird Stories, which represents the beginning of GFF’s partnership with Filmlab Palestine will start on October 19. For its second edition, Sunbird Stories will work on the development of five short films, shortlisted from a number of submitted projects, by emerging Arab filmmakers in the genre of children, teens, family, and coming of age stories. The Filmlab Palestine: Pitching Session and Awards will take place at TU Berlin and will start from 8:00 AM until 6:00 PM.
Moreover, the activities of the CineGouna Platform will include a panel discussion, in collaboration with Medfest Egypt, titled Breathe, Talk, Perform: A Take on Psychological Well-being of Actors, which will discuss the mental health of actors. Panelists include Egyptian screenwriter Mariam Naoum, actors Mohamed Farrag, Ahmed Malek, and May Elghety, as well as consultant psychiatrist Dr Nabil Elkot. The panel is set to be moderated by Dr Mina El Naggar, founder and managing director of Medfest Egypt.