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CAIRO 2022 Awards

Alam and Mother Valley excel at Cairo

by 

- The Golden Pyramid Award for Best Film went to Firas Khoury’s drama on a Palestinian teenager, whilst the movie by French-Lebanese actor-director Carlos Chahine was awarded Best Arabic Film

Alam and Mother Valley excel at Cairo
Alam by Firas Khoury

The 44th Cairo Film Festival came to a close yesterday, after a vibrant fortnight that saw cinema from the region showcased alongside highlights from this year’s international festival scene, while well-attended public screenings and events dovetailed with its specialised industry strands, Cairo Industry Days and Cairo Film Connection. It was also the first year with its new festival director, Egyptian filmmaker Amir Ramses, at the helm, who was previously the artistic director of the El Gouna Film Festival, which has currently paused its activities. Landing Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans for its MENA premiere on the opening night was a notable coup, whilst the festival was also able to give prime placements to prominent Arab filmmakers with work this year, such as Sally El Hosaini, for her Toronto opener The Swimmers [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, and Ali Cherri for The Dam [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ali Cherri
film profile
]
, which screened in competition.

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The International Competition jury, headed by jury president Naomi Kawase, awarded the Golden Pyramid Award for Best Film to Firas Khoury’s Alam [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
, a Palestinian drama centring on a group of Arab high-school students in Galilee, who are caught up in demonstrations on the eve of Israel’s independence day celebrations. After premiering at Toronto, and having been sold in several territories, including the USA, the partly French-funded debut from Khoury was a notable success at the festival, also garnering an acting prize and the Audience Award.

In the Horizons of New Arab Cinema Competition, the Saad Eldin Wahba Award for Best Film went to Carlos Chahine’s Mother Valley. Primarily financed in France, where Chahine lives and has worked for many years as an actor, the film depicts an encounter in a mountainous region of Lebanon between a devoted young wife and an older French man, who opens her eyes to her sheltered life. The prizes in this section were handed out by a three-person jury, composed of Michel Kammoun, Moufida Fedhila and Reem El Adl.

There was also room for two notable critics’ prizes, as Jerzy Skolimowski’s feted Eo [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
was granted the Arab Critics' Awards for European Films and Ahmad Abdalla’s 19B, the sole Egyptian feature in competition, was FIPRESCI’s pick.

The full list of award winners is as follows:

International Competition

Golden Pyramid Award for Best Film
Alam [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
- Firas Khoury (France/Tunisia/Palestine/Saudi Arabia/Qatar)

Silver Pyramid, Special Jury Award, for Best Director
Emmanuelle Nicot – Love According to Dalva [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Emmanuelle Nicot
interview: Emmanuelle Nicot, Julie Esp…
film profile
]
(Belgium/France)

Bronze Pyramid Award for Best First/Second Work
Bread and Salt [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Damian Kocur
film profile
]
- Damian Kocur (Poland)

Naguib Mahfouz Award for Best Screenplay
A Man - Kei Ishikawa (Japan)

Best Actor Award
Maher Elkheir - The Dam [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Ali Cherri
film profile
]
(France/Canada/Sudan/Germany/Serbia)
Mahmoud Bakri - Alam

Best Actress Award
Zelda Samson - Love According to Dalva

Henry Barakat Award for Best Artistic Contribution
Mostafa Elkashef (cinematographer) - 19B (Egypt)

Horizons of New Arab Cinema Competition Awards

Saad Eldin Wahba Award for Best Arabic Film
Mother Valley - Carlos Chahine (France/Lebanon)

Salah Abu Seif Award, the Special Jury Award
Riverbed - Bassem Breche (Lebanon/Qatar)

Best Non-Fiction Film Award
Far From the Nile -Sherief Elkatsha (Egypt/USA)

Best Acting Performance Award
Carole Abboud - Riverbed

Special Mentions
I’m Coming Home - Yassine Redissi (Tunisia)
Lyna Khoudri - Houria [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
(France/Belgium)

International Critics’ Week Competition Awards

Shadi Abdel Salam Award for Best Film
Pamfir [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk
film profile
]
- Dmytro Sukholytkyy-Sobchuk (Ukraine/France/Poland/Chile/Luxembourg/Germany)

Fathy Farag Award for Best Artistic Contribution
Joyland - Saim Sadiq (Pakistan)

Special Mention
Victim [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Michal Blaško
film profile
]
- Michal Blaško (Slovakia/Czech Republic/Germany)

Short Film Competition Awards

Youssef Chahine Award for Best Short Film
Rosemary A.D. (After Dad) - Ethan Barrett (USA)

Special Jury Award
My Girl Friend - Kawthar Younis (Egypt)

Special Mention
One Fucking Wish - Piotr Jasiński (Czech Republic)

FIPRESCI Award
19B - Ahmad Abdalla

Arab Critics' Awards for European Films
Eo [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
- Jerzy Skolimowski (Poland/Italy)

Audience Award
Alam - Firas Khoury

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