The Cairo International Film Festival (CIFF) will grant Egyptian actor Maged El-Kedwany the Faten Hamama Prize for Excellency at the festival’s upcoming 39th edition in November.
The Faten Hamama Prize is awarded to individuals who have contributed to enhancing the cinema scene in Egypt. Last year the prize was awarded to Egyptian actor Ahmed Helmy.
The award itself is designed by the renowned Egyptian sculptor Adam Henein.
A multi award-winning actor, El-Kedwany was born in Cairo's Shoubra district. He spent his childhood in Kuwait and returned to Cairo after completing secondary school, joining the Faculty of Fine Arts.
He graduated with a bachelor's in design and then pursued a degree in acting from the Higher Institute of Theatrical Arts, which he completed in 1995. Before graduating he was already joining in small amateur plays.
The turning point in his life came when actor and director Karam Metwaea nominated him for a role in the play titled 727, and afterwards in the television series Arabesque.
Kedwany’s professional acting career began in 1996 with the plays El-Eskafy Malek (The Shoemaker is King), and Arafit Al-Asphalt (Asphaly Ghosts), which spotlighted his talent and brought him roles in several television series such as Nahnu La Nazraa Al-Shawk (We Don't Grow Thorns) and Abyad We Eswed Tany (Black and White Again) as well as films including Ganet El-Shayatin (Devils Paradise) and Kawkab El-Sharq (Star of the East).
Another turning point came in 2001 when he garnered popular recognition through roles in comedy films, including Haramiya Fe KG2 (KG2 Thieves), El-Ragol El-Abyad El-Motawaset (Average White Man), and Askar Fel Moaskar (Camping in the Camp).
Although he took on supporting roles, El-Kedwany was memorable in many successful films, such as Cabaret, Teer Enta (Go Fly), El-Farah (The Wedding) as well as the more serious film 678 that tackled sexual harassment.
His role in 678 earned him a jury award from the 47th Chicago Film Festival and a Muhr Award for best actor from the Dubai International Film Festival.
El-Kedwany’s role in the film Asmaa earned him the award for best actor from the Abu Dhabi Film Festival.
He further won local awards for Saa We Nos (An Hour and a Half), and Abl Zahmet El Sef (Before the Summer Crowds), from the Egyptian Film Society, and for his latest film Hepta: The Last Lecture from the Catholic Cinema Centre.
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