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CAIRO 2021 Awards

Mexican-Polish co-production The Hole in the Fence grabs the main trophy at Cairo

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- Director Joaquín del Paso together with his producing partner Fernanda de la Peza accepted the Golden Pyramid Award for Best Film during a glamorous ceremony at the Cairo Opera House

Mexican-Polish co-production The Hole in the Fence grabs the main trophy at Cairo
Director Joaquín del Paso accepting the Golden Pyramid Award for Best Film for The Hole in the Fence (© Cairo International Film Festival)

The international jury of the 43rd edition of the Cairo International Film Festival led by Emir Kusturica emphasised the coming-of-age drama The Hole in the Fence [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, by Mexican director Joaquín del Paso, which explores the social polarisation rife in today’s Mexico through the story of boys from a prestigious private school who receive training in a secluded exclusive summer camp, entitled to turn into tomorrow’s elite.

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Eleven other European productions and co-productions received various awards , four of them within the international competition: The Silver Pyramid - Special Jury Award For Best Director went to the mythic debut drama Small Body [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Laura Samani
film profile
]
by Laura Samani (Italy/France/Slovenia); the Naguib Mahfouz Award for Best Screenplay was granted to Péter Kerekes and Ivan Ostrochovský for 107 Mothers [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Peter Kerekes
film profile
]
(Slovakia/Czech Republic/Ukraine); Swamy Rotolo was named Best Actress for her performance in A Chiara [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jonas Carpignano
film profile
]
(Italy/France); and José Ángel Alayón pocketed the Henry Barakat Award for Best Artistic Contribution with an accent on his cinematography in They Carry Death [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Samuel M Delgado and Helena…
film profile
]
(Spain/Colombia). The Bronze Pyramid Award for Best First or Second Feature from a Director in the International competition was taken by the thought-provoking South Korean melodrama Aloners by Hong Seong-eun. Blind Spot by Lotfi Achour (Tunisia/France) was announced as the Best Short Film by receiving the Youssef Chanine Award.

The Horizons of Arab Cinema Competition, judged by another jury, was topped by the Lebanese-French co-production Memory Box [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Joana Hadjithomas, Khalil J…
film profile
]
by Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreigen who left with the Saad Eldin Wahba Award for Best Film. The self-exploration documentary Fiasco [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
by Nicolas Khoury (Lebanon/Netherlands) received the Special Jury Award, named after Salah Abu Seif, as well as the Special Mention within the International Critics’ Week Competition, in which on the other hand, the main Shadi Abdel Salam Award For Best Film went to The Stranger [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ameer Fakher Eldin
film profile
]
by Ameer Fakher Eldin (Syria/Palestine/Germany). The Palestinian issues related drama dealing with occupation and patriarchy also took the Best Arab Film Award, presented to the producers Tony Copti, Jiries Copti and Dorothe Beinemeier, consisting of $10,000 in cash.

The Tunisian political and psychological drama Tomorrow by Dhafer L'Abidine snatched the FIPRESCI Award, while audience voted for the emancipating female dramedy Daughters Of Abdel Rahman by Zaid Abu Hamdan (Jordan).

Here is the full awards list:

International Competition Awards

The Golden Pyramid Award for Best Film
The Hole in the Fence [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
– Joaquín del Paso (Mexico/Poland)

The Silver Pyramid - Special Jury Award For Best Director
Small Body [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Laura Samani
film profile
]
– Laura Samani (Italy/France/Slovenia)

The Bronze Pyramid Award for Best First or Second Feature of a Director
Aloners – Hong Seong-eun (South Korea)

Naguib Mahfouz Award for Best Screenplay
Péter Kerekes, Ivan Ostrochovský - 107 Mothers [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Peter Kerekes
film profile
]
(Slovakia/Czech Republic/Ukraine)

Best Actor Award
Mohamen Mamdouh - Abu Saddam (Egypt)

Best Actress Award
Swamy Rotolo - A Chiara [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Jonas Carpignano
film profile
]
(Italy/France)

Henry Barakat Award for Best Artistic Contribution
José Ángel Alayón for the cinematography on They Carry Death [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Samuel M Delgado and Helena…
film profile
]
- Helena Girón, Samuel M Delgado (Spain/Colombia)

International Short Film Competition Awards

Youssef Chanine Award for Best Short Film
Blind Spot - Lotfi Achour (Tunisia/France)

Special Jury Award
Then Came Dark - Marie-Rose Osta (Lebanon)
It’s Nothing Nagy, Just Hang Up! – Youhanna Nagy (Egypt)

The Horizons of Arab Cinema Competition Awards

Saad Eldin Wahba Award for Best Film (presented to the directors)
Joana Hadjithomas, Khalil Joreigen - Memory Box [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Joana Hadjithomas, Khalil J…
film profile
]
(Lebanon/France)

Salah Abu Seif Award – The Special Jury Award
Fiasco [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
– Nicolas Khoury (Lebanon/Netherlands)

Best Non-Fiction Film Award
From Cairo – Hala Galal (Egypt)

Best Acting Performance Award
Afef Ben Mahmoud - Streams [+see also:
trailer
interview: Mehdi Hmili
film profile
]
(Tunisia/Luxembourg/France)

Special Mention
A Second Life - Anis Lassoued (Tunisia)

International Critics’ Week Competition Awards

Shadi Abdel Salam Award For Best Film
The Stranger [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ameer Fakher Eldin
film profile
]
– Ameer Fakher Eldin (Syria/Palestine/Germany)

Fathy Farag Award - The Special Jury Award
Wild Roots [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
- Hajni Kis (Hungary/Slovakia)

Special Mention for Actress
Arcelia Ramírez - La Civil [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Teodora Ana Mihai
film profile
]
(Belgium/Romania/Mexico)

Best Arab Film Award (presented to the producers)
The Stranger – dir. Ameer Fakher Eldin, prod. Tony Copti, Jiries Copti, Dorothe Beinemeier

Special Mention
Fiasco – Nicolas Khoury

FIPRESCI Award
Tomorrow – Dhafer L'Abidine (Tunisia)

Audience Award
Daughters Of Abdel Rahman – Zaid Abu Hamdan (Jordan)

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