The opening of the 9th Panorama of the European Film was held on Tuesday 1 November at Karim Cinema, in Downtown Cairo.
The Panorama of the European film is an annual event which showcases award-winning European films of various genres, ranging from fiction to documentary. This year, Panorama will run between 2 and 12 November.
The opening ceremony began with an introduction by president Marianne Khoury, in which she thanked the numerous sponsors of the festival. Subsequent speakers announced new screening locations available to audiences outside Cairo -- this year in Alexandria, Ismailia and Port Said -- as well as the festival's new sections (Urban Lens: Spotlight on Berlin and Panoranimation) and the breadth of content this year's films will cover.
Present at the opening was Angel Gutierrez, representative of the European Union Delegation to Egypt. In his opening speech, he highlighted Panorama’s capacity to not only explore European culture, but also reveal the old continent’s perspective on other cultures.
The film selected to open the festival was director Cesc Gay’s Truman (2015 Spain/Argentine).
Truman was screened on numerous international festivals to critic and audience acclaim. Festivals included the Toronto International Film Festival (2015), and the San Sebastián International Film Festival the same year, where the film was awarded the Silver Shell for Best Actor, for the two lead roles. The film also received five Goya Awards: Best Film, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor.
The comedy-drama follows the story of Julián (Ricardo Darín), a terminally ill man living in Madrid who receives an unexpected visit from his friend Thomas (Javier Cámara), who lives in Canada. The eponymous Truman, Julián’s loyal dog, accompanies the two men on a short, yet unforgettable journey of love, laughter, tears and acceptance. The film is a beautifully honest depiction of dying and illness, stripped of all romanticisation.
Gay tackles a dark, complex subject, yet manages to incorporate many light and humorous passages. While dramatic scenes drive the plot forward, the story is lifted by well-timed comic relief.
The film will be screened again at Karim Cinema on Wednesday, 9 November, at 9:30pm.
Check the Panorama's complete programme here
Ahram Online is the media sponsor of The Panorama of the European Film and of Zawya.
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