Ismailia Film Fest Draws Crowd of Cinema's Elite
The 5th Ismailia Documentary Film Festival has witnessed heavy participation, welcoming delegates from 24 countries despite the recent terrorist attacks in the US, according to news agencies.
Earlier, the festival officials expressed fears that the attacks and subsequent upheaval would affect the event, which was revived after a five-year halt.
The festival head, Salah Mare’i, told the press that “the six-day festival, which opened Saturday in Cairo, hasn't been afffected at all by either the attacks in the US or American-led war...by the international coalition against Afghanistan.”
“The festival management sent its regrets for not being able to receive a number of foreign directors due to the heavy participation, which prompted some of them to come to Egypt at their own expense,” Mare’i added.
A whopping 250 films will be screened at the festival, out of which 53 will compete for the official contest prizes.
The festival jury is headed by the Chilean director Miguel Litin and consists of eight members, including Iraqi director Qais Al Zubaidi, Egyptian director Khairi Bsharah and the director of the cinema department at the Arab Institute in Paris, Magedah Wasef.
The opening ceremony on Saturday was set aside for screening a number of Egyptian films under the banner “The Palestinian Issue Through Foreign Eyes.”
The festival, which will conclude on Thursday, will screen long and short documentary films, in addition to other short narrative works and cartoons – Albawaba.com
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