Cairo International Film Festival has set new dates for the 42nd Edition, to be held from December 2nd to 10th to ensure a safer and more successful festival, according to health procedures and measures approved by the Egyptian Government and the World Health Organization (WHO). According to the festival’s new dates, the third edition of ‘Cairo Industry Day’ will be held from December 4th to 7th 2020, as well as the activities of ‘Cairo Film Connection’ to be held from December 5th to 7th.
Here are the 10 of the most important titles of the 2020 CIFF.
Cairo International Film Festival revealed the first batch of Films of its 42nd Edition, promising the audience a rich and diverse selection of the world’s most recent and anticipated films of the year, most of which won important awards in major film festivals.
Mohamed Hefzy, Festival President, said ; “Aside from the soon to be announced word and international premieres and competition titles, the programming team is proud to include a collection of the most Important and anticipated films of the year for the audience of Cairo, many of which are poised to be frontrunners of the awards season after collecting critical praise in festivals like Venice, Toronto, and Berlin earlier in the year.
The American Film “Nomadland” tops the list of important titles that will have their MENA premiere at CIFF. After winning two of the most prestigious awards of the year, Venice’s Golden Lion and TIFF’s People’s Choice from Toronto International Film Festival, making it the front runner for the Best Film academy award.
Directed by Chloé Zhao and starring Oscar winner Frances McDormand, the story of Nomadland is a somber story of the resilient discards of an unforgiving economy has a lived-in authenticity that creeps up on you with stirring power and grace. Cairo Film Festival will be presenting it in the oﬃcial section out of competition.
“The Disciple”, an India Production that won the best screenplay and FIPRESCI awards at Venice Film Festival, is also featured in the oﬃcial section out of competition. “Directed by Chaitanya Tamhane and produced by Oscar-winning Alfonso Cuarón, the film’s story revolves around a young Indian boy who dedicates his life to following his dream of becoming a classical Indian singer.
Also part of the out of competition official selection is the German-French drama “Undine” the latest film by Christian Petzold, who presided over the jury of the International Competition of Cairo Film Festival in it’s 38th edition. The film participated in the oﬃcial competition of the Berlin Film Festival back in February, winning Best Actress for lead star Paula Beer as well the FIPRESCI prize. Undine works as a historian lecturing on Berlin’s urban development. But when the man she loves leaves her, the ancient myth catches up with her. Undine has to kill the man who betrays her and return to the water.
Also from Berlin, the award winning Panorama title “Mogul Mowgli”, a British-American production directed by Bassam Tariq and starring Riz Ahmed (also co-writer) won the FIPRESCI prize for the Panorama section. The film follows the journey of a British Pakistani rapper who is on the cusp of his first world tour, but is struck down by an illness that threatens to derail his big break.. The film will also screen in the oﬃcial selection out of competition section.
Next on the list is “Exile“, a German-Belgium-Kosovo production, directed by Visar Morina, who won the Heart of Sarajevo for best feature film at the Sarajevo Film Festival. Exile tells the story of a chemical engineer of foreign origin who feels discriminated and bullied at work, plunging him into an identity crisis.The Festival will screen “Exile” in the panorama section.
The British Film “Limbo” one of the most prominent oﬃcial selections of Cannes Film Festival, premiered in Toronto, before winning the Youth Jury Award at San Sebastian Film Festival earlier last month. The film will compete in the international competition of the 42nd edition. Directed by Ben Sharrock and starring Egyptian actor Amir Al Masry, the film presents a diﬀerent perspective on the problems of refugees in Europe.
Two years after his participation with his previous film “Jumpman” in 2018,, director Ivan I. Tverdovskiy, returns to the Cairo International Film Festival with his latest feature “The Conference” also competing in the international competition. The film, a Russia-Estonia-UK-Italy co-production, received a special mention from the jury of Venice Days. Many years after a deadly terrorist siege in a Moscow theatre, survivor Natasha returns to the crime scene to hold a memorial evening, finally able to confront her survivor’s guilt and her estranged daughter and husband.One of the most prominent Arab films of 2020, also participating in the international competition, is “Gaza Mon Amour” a coproduction between France, Germany, Portugal, and Palestine, and directed by Tarzan Nasser and Arab Nasser. The Film premiered at the 2020 Venice film festival before winning the NETPAC award for best Asian film at the Toronto International film Festival. The story revolves around a lonely elderly man that falls in love with a seamstress and tries to confess his love to her as he discovers an ancient statue that will change his life.
Mexican director Michel Franco, a member of the jury of the international competition during the 41st edition of CIFF, will this year participate with dystopian thriller “New Order” , winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival. The film will screen in the oﬃcial selection out of competition section. The story is set during a wedding for members of a wealthy upper-class family, which is interrupted with the arrival of unexpected guests and turbulent events that overturn the country.
In the International Panorama section of the Festival, “Apples“, produced by Greece, Poland and Slovenia, and directed by Christos Nikou, will have its MENA premiere after it’s debut as the opening film of the Orrizonti competition of Venice Film Festival. The story revolves around a mysterious worldwide pandemic that causes humans to suffer sudden amnesia, and is focused on a character who finds himself enrolled in a recovery program designed to help unclaimed patients to build new identities.