Curtain down Saturday night for the new Casablanca Arab Film Festival. The White City hosted from December 10 to 15 the first edition of this festival organized by the association for culture and development “Imtidad”.
“The fact that there was not yet an Arab film festival in the programming of film festivals in Morocco is very surprising especially in a city like Casablanca where many national and international productions are shot. That’s why we decided to set up this festival with the Arab cinema theme”, said in a statement Fatema Nouali Azar, president of the Imtidad association.
It is no surprise that the leader of the 7th art in the region won the grand prize of this inaugural edition with the Egyptian film “Diamond Dust” by director Marwan Hamed. The feature film follows the life of a man who works from time to time in a pharmacy to improve his financial situation and who discovers that his father was killed by a brute. He then seeks to avenge him.
Several other films made in 2017 and 2018 were also in competition including “Volubilis” by Moroccan director Faouzi Bensaïdi, “Writing on snow” by Palestinian Rashid Masharawi, “Camera” by Emirati Abdullah Al Junaibi, “Until the End Of Time” Algerian Mohamed Al Daradji, “The Journey” by Iraqi Mohamed Al Daradji, “Aleppo-Istanbul / The Guest” by Turk Andaç Haznedaroğlu, and finally “Dear Son” by Tunisian Mohamed Ben Attia.
The jury was composed of Algerian director and screenwriter Ahmed Rachedi, Moroccan actress Latefa Ahrar, Egyptian screenwriter and actor Tamer Habib, Lebanese actress Carmen Lebbos and Bahraini film critic Hassan Hadad.
During the five days of the festival, visitors and poeple of Casablanca were able to choose between the Rialto, Rif and Ritz cinemas to discover the many Moroccan and Arab films selected for this year’s program.