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A few good news from the festival circuit I Bienvenue sur le blog de Bruno avec quelques news en français du circuit des festivals francophones. Laissez moi un commentaire quand vous le pouvez.


The Karama Yemen: The Human Rights Film Festival kicks off : full program and masterclasses announced

22 acclaimed and compelling short films from around the world featuring 10 Arab and 2 celebrated Yemeni films

Masterclasses with Academy Award nominee Yorgos Lamprinos, Artistic Director of Locarno Giona Nazzaro & Director and Producer May Odeh                                           

The Karama Yemen: The Human Rights Film Festival organised by the Youth of the World Together Organization (YWT) and funded by the European Union today announced the 22 critically acclaimed film programme, the esteemed juries and a series of masterclasses with renowned industry professionals. 


The 14-day festival will run virtually from 13-27 March and in selected cinemas in Yemen’s Aden, Hadhramaut and Taiz. Bannered ‘Reclaiming Narratives’ the third edition is a pioneering Festival that will showcase the most compelling, unique and powerful shorts from a diverse array of filmmakers from around the world. 


The Festival will also host a series of masterclasses with key industry experts from a range of disciplines to speak about their craft, offering a unique opportunity to gain first-hand insights for aspiring local creatives and emerging filmmakers to broaden their knowledge. 


The programme includes ‘Film Festival Distribution for First-Time Filmmakers’ hosted by Italian film critic and Artistic Director of the Locarno Film Festival Giona Nazzaro and ‘First-Time Film Producers’ led by commended Palestinian Director and Producer May Odeh (1000 Fires, 200 Meters, The Present).


In addition, prolific Film Editor Yorgos Lamprinos, who won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, the British Independent Film Award and received nominations for an Academy Award and BAFTA in the category ‘Best Film Editing’ for ‘The Father’ Florian Zeller will host a masterclass titled ‘The Art and Techniques of Film Cutting’.


All the films in the Festival will be deliberated on by three separate juries. 


The Best Short Fiction Film jury will consist of acclaimed Yemeni film and theatre director Amr GamalIn addition to founding the pioneering Khaleej Aden Theatre Troupe in 2005, Gamal’s first feature film ‘10 days before the wedding', was the first film to open commercially in Yemen in the last three decades and became Yemen's official submission to the Oscar in 2018. 


Joining him is Saudi filmmaker, writer and actor Hisham Fageeh (No Woman, No Drive, Barakah Meets Barakah, Fay’s Palette) who has recently been appointed as Director of the Middle East Media Initiative (MEMI) at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts. Fageeh received international acclaim when he co-produced and starred in the ground-breaking hit ‘Barakah Meets Barakah’. 


Completing the jury is Sudanese-Russian filmmaker, scriptwriter and researcher Suzannah Mirghani (Al-Sit, Caravan, Virtual Voice, Hind's Dream). Her short film Al-Sit catapulted her onto the international stage receiving praise from audiences and critics alike and picking up awards at major film festivals including the Jury Award at the 2021 Busan International Short Film Festival.


The Best Short Documentary in competition will be judged by Özge Calafato, curator, writer and academic at the University of Amsterdam (UvA). Calafato is recognised for working across several film festivals and institutions supporting independent cinema and emerging film talent. 


Joining her is founder of Moving Image Middle East —, E. Nina Rothe was born in Florence, Italy and grew up in New York City. She is prominent entertainment and fashion journalist who has written for numerous international outlets and is an expert on film and culture in the Middle East


Rounding out the jury is Talal Afifi, a renowned Sudanese Film curator, producer, and director/founder of the Sudan Film Factory and president of the Sudan Independent Film Festival. As an influential professional within cinema culture and the film industry in Africa and the Arab World, Afifi has contributed to producing more than 40 films.


The Best Yemeni Films selection will be judged by Gabool al-Mutawakel, a Yemen civil society activist, and a co-founder of Youth Leadership Development Foundation (YLDF). 


She is joined by Yemeni writer and critic Huda Jafar, who is highly regarded for her influential analytical articles that bring together various branches of knowledge from cinema, politics, history, literature and sociology. 


Completing the jury is Lynda Belkhiria, head of the industry platform Carthage pro at the Carthage Film Festival. She is co-creator of the concept ‘No Means No’ an initiative launched by IMS to raise awareness and ignite debate about gender-based violence and is the president of the newly established cultural association Action 216 in Tunisia.


The line-up of 22 films celebrates the best contemporary filmmaking from global storytellers. The slate showcases the most powerful and authentic narratives from new and exciting voices.  


‘Honorable Lady’ directed by Argentinian mother and daughter filmmakers Ana Sol Alonso and Teresita Cherry explores the last military dictatorship in Argentina two years after the beginning through the letters of one mother to another 


‘Branka’ directed by Ákos K. Kovács is set in 1991 in Yugoslavia, far away from the war zones follows a lonely woman Branka who works in a hospital where she has battled with the burden of knowing that new-born babies are disappearing from the hospital.


Iranian independent director Azadeh Moussavi presents her film ‘The Visit’, after six months, Elaheh is finally allowed to visit her husband, who is a political prisoner. Elaheh and her little daughter Tara have one single day to prepare for this important meeting.


Internationally Acclaimed Yemeni experimental film director and producer Asim Abdulaziz Ahmed brings his short film ‘1941’ funded by The British Film Council which shines a spotlight on the emotional and psychological impact of living in a war zone. This project aims to raise awareness around depression, anxiety, fear, and sadness that Yemenis are grappling with daily.


Iranian director, producer Hossein Mirzamohammadi’s short ‘Mashoom’ is the terrifying story of Bloor, an Afghan girl who escapes 80 days of torture at the hands of the Taliban only to return to her village and family and not receive the warm welcome she’d expected. 


Bangladeshi filmmaker and cultural activist Shekh al Mamun who moved to Korea to work as a migrant worker brings this narrative to his film ‘Perm’. The film concentrates on ‘Nisha’ a young Bangladeshi woman who lives in a rural village in Korea and faces pressures from her family to have children despite striving for independence and ambitions for education. 


Born in Taiwan, Wu-Ching Chang is an award-winning animation director, her extraordinary film ‘My Grandmother Is an Egg’ has been received at major festivals around the world. The film unfolds the traditional practice of pre-arranged marriage, selling a young girl to another family to be raised as a future daughter-in-law. Through representing the unjust tradition in the long past, the film aims to reflect women's oppression and struggles for freedom.


‘Beware Of The Monster’ from Egyptian Director Abdulrahman Hamad picked up awards at Vancouver and Venice Film Festival. The much-loved comedy revolves around Hassan who faces problems with his wife, when he begins to see her as a monster, he is forced to plot his escape.


Syrian filmmaker Houssam Jlelati’s ‘A Camera on the Roof’ unveils the plight of a taxi driver who despite the dangers of war lives on the roof of a building in Damascus. Inspired by Jafar Panahi’s film ‘Taxi Tehran’ our narrator heads to seek out the taxi driver. 


‘Letter From Your Far-off Country’ is a series of new works from Indian filmmaker Suneil Sanzgiri. Using hand-processed 16mm film, direct animation techniques, and digital renderings of Kashmir’s mountains, Suneil Sanzgiri’s film explores lineages of political commitment and diasporic creativity. 


‘A Day's Work’ is both a short documentary and a film installation from German-Austrian-American filmmaker and editor Max Kerkhoff. The film follows workers performing routine tasks seemingly indefinitely. The landscape, ravaged by violence and destruction, looks like the setting in a dystopian sci-fi movie. As we move in closer, we begin to grasp what we are seeing and realize it is a road construction site – the more details appear, the more the complexity of this reality emerges. 


In ‘When Beirut was Beirut’ Lebanese filmmaker, activist, and artist Alessandra Chanty introduces us to three majestic abandoned buildings that witnessed Beirut’s tumultuous history. By using animation and archives they come to life to share their stories from Beirut’s golden era to the Lebanese Civil War in 1975 when the lives of these buildings changed completely.


Anas Alodaini, a Yemeni filmmaker will introduce ‘To The Elbows’ a film that examines the dynamics of friends that meet after a long absence. Despite this they still share the same beliefs and the same differences, the conversation is intense and we get to know the nature of their relationship.


Majid Al-Remaihi, a filmmaker and artist from Qatar presents his acclaimed documentary And Then They Burn the Sea’ which is an elegiac contemplation on familial memory and loss. Remaihi ruminates on the experience of witnessing his mother’s gradual and terminal memory loss over many years. Weaving a personal family archive, re-enacted dreams and rituals, the film underlines the promise of cinema as a medium for memories even at their most irretrievable.


Following its premiere at the Venice Film Festival and scooping the Bronze Tanit Award at Carthage Film Festival, ‘Don't Get Too Comfortable’ from Yemeni-East African visual storyteller Shaima Al-Tamimi is a heartfelt introspective letter to her deceased grandfather. The letter questions the continuous pattern of movement amongst Yemenis in the diaspora by using archival photographs, sourced footage, parallax animation, abstract videos to create an audio-visual body of work that calls attention to the collective feeling of statelessness and sense of being felt by Yemeni (or non-Yemeni) migrants.



Yemeni film director and street photographer Omima Tareq’s film ‘What If’ explores two young women’s rights to an education and restrictions imposed due to social pressure. One is supported by her family to follow her dreams and complete her studies abroad whilst her friend is denied access to school and quality learning, instead she remains confirmed to the home.


‘Muzynah’ from Yemeni filmmaker Sahar Al-Jabli follows young talented artist Sama who is under intense pressure to provide for her family following her father losing his job due to the war and crisis in Yemen. Despite the challenges, Sama manages to complete her education with merit and her continuous struggle to seize opportunities despite the odds.


Yemeni filmmaker Amr Al-Khulaidi short film ‘Shadow Of The Past’ revolves around a young man who is struggling to move past painful childhood memories and live a normal and happy life. The trauma prevents him from being able to marry, and all his attempts to reclaim his life are met with failure.  


Actor and director Jörgen Scholtens from the Netherlands brings to Karama the absurd comedy ‘Cuckoo!’ about a lonely man who lives inside a cuckoo clock. Every hour he straps himself into his ejection seat and shoots through the doors of the clock. “Cuckoo!” He yells, His work is of vital importance. The old lady who sits under the clock needs to take her medication at exact hours


Seemab is an award-winning writer, director and producer from Pakistan. Her short film ‘Mulaqat’ which was at Venice and Sundance Film Festival is about Zara, a schoolgirl in Karachi, who shares a sensual dance video with her virtual boyfriend, who then blackmails her. Caught between his manipulative behaviour and the desire to experience love on her terms, Zara searches for the strength to reject the confines of a patriarchal society.           


‘Go Home’ from Palestinian filmmaker Razan Madhoon film focuses on a young Palestinian woman who tries to claim asylum in the UK, she faces the indifference of British bureaucracy and the disillusionment of a Polish asylum officer on the verge of leaving the country for good.


In ‘Stay Home Sisters’ Nepalese filmmaker Uma Bista tackles the taboos of surrounding menstruation in Western Nepal. Despite being outlawed, Chhaupadi - the banishment of women and girls from family activities during menstruation is widely practiced across Western Nepal. Each month, women are subjected to a ritual of isolation. Deemed impure, they are often forced to stay in cowsheds. Elsewhere in the country, oppression takes other forms.


The Karama Yemen: Human Rights Film Festival will run both in cinemas and virtually from 13-27 March 2022.



Editors Notes:


About Youth of the World Together Organization (YWT):


Founded in 2015, the Youth of the World Together Organization (YWT) was established to provide a platform for the young population to drive a positive impact in their communities through access to a series of development, grants, and mentoring programs.


We aim to achieve:


  • Empower individuals and communities through the arts.
  • Contribute to accelerating and supporting the creative industry in Yemen.
  • Build a platform for free expression using art, culture, and media.
  • Build Bridges between Yemeni activists and artists in the diaspora with those at home.
  • Create an open safe space to promote Human Rights and Democratic values.



About Karama Yemen: Human Rights Film Festival (Karama HRFF):


The Karama Yemen: Human Rights Film Festival launched in 2019, is the first international human rights film festival in Yemen.


The Karama Yemen HRFF is organized by the Youth of the World Together Organization (YWT) and is funded by the European Union. Karama Yemen HRFF aims to advocate for human rights and social justice, encourage debate, and open a democratic dialogue on human rights issues by screening films from different parts of the world.


The 14-day Festival held in Yemen’s Aden, Hadhramaut and Taiz also serves as a crucial platform for Yemeni filmmakers to share their own unheard stories with local and international audiences, exchange knowledge, network, and forge partnerships.


The Karama Yemen: Human Rights Film Festival will run both in cinemas and virtually from 13-27 March 2022.




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This Blog in french, is managed by Bruno Chatelin

It covers the french film festivals circuit with ambience and news.
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HEC, publicitaire chez Intermarco Publicis, DMM et JWT puis distributeur chez Sony Pictures (Directeur Marketing) de 1987 à 1995 puis UGC FOX (Directeur Général de 95 à 97, à la création du GIE)

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