Al-Ahram Arabic news site has honored Hend Sabry, the award-winning Tunisian actress based in Cairo.
A special award was granted to Sabry in a ceremony that took place last Thursday at Al-Ahram premises, and that celebrated her extensive 17-year career in Egyptian cinema and television.
Sabry, 36, is among the most popular actresses in the region and has been based in Egypt for many years, where she is a regular fixture in local films and TV series.
On her Instagram account, Sabry shared photos from the ceremony, with a caption expressing her gratitude and pride at being honored by the long standing Al-Ahram establishment.
During the ceremony, Sabry discussed some of the milestones of her career, which culminated with her receiving the Faten Hamama Excellence Award at the Cairo International Film Festival in 2017.
She said the award was most significant to her, for bearing the name of the iconic Faten Hamama, whom she loves and respects, with the approval and support of Hamama's family.
Other subjects discussed included her initial apprehension at taking on the series Halawet El-Donia, because of the emotional sensitivity around cancer as a disease. Yet she was proud to have taken the role, which she feels has given many people hope and inspiration.
She further talked about giving up her salary as an actress in the 2016 film Zahret Halab (Rose of Aleppo), which she also directed.
“This is common in the field, when an actor believes in a film with an important message and a small budget. It was time to have a film about the Tunisian youth in who have joined IS militants in Syria or Libya. As artists, we are trying to answer some of the many questions around this issue,” Sabry said.
Sabry’s career began in 1994 at the age of 14 when she debuted in the Tunisian production Silence of the Palaces (Samt Al-Qosoor) by director Moufida Tlatli. Her first appearance in Egyptian cinema was in the 2002 production A Teenager's Diary (Muzakirat Murahiqua), a role that paved her way to stardom.
Her later roles include starring in films such as A Citizen, a Detective, and a Thief (Mowaten we Mokhber we Haramy) in 2002, Downtown Girls (Banat West El-Balad) in 2005, and Ibrahim El-Abyad in 2009.
She also appeared in The Yacoubian Building (Oumaret Yacoubian, 2006), alongside an extensive cast of Egypt's biggest stars.
Her embodiment of an HIV positive woman in Asmaa (2011) brought her several awards.
Apart from her many achievements in cinema, Sabry is active in social and humanitarian work. Since 2009, she has been working closely with the UN World Food Programme (WFP) on raising awareness about hunger in the region.
In 2010, Sabry officially became a WFP regional ambassador against hunger.
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