Egyptian director Ayten Amin's 'Souad' to premiere in Tribeca Film Festival's International Competition

Ahram Online , Thursday 22 Apr 2021

The film was chosen for Cannes Film Festival's Official Selection in its cancelled 2020 edition, and it was also chosen to participate in Berlinale 2021 in June


Directed and written by Ayten Amin (co-written by Mahmoud Ezzat), the film 'Souad' (2021) will have its international premiere during the upcoming 20th Tribeca Film Festival scheduled to take place between 9 and 20 June 2021.

The film will be screened within the festival's International Narrative Competition, competing with five other works, all by directors from European countries.

Souad was one of 56 films in the Cannes Film Festival's Official Selection for the 2020, an edition which was cancelled due to the coronavirus. It received the Cannes Festival's support with a possibility to premiere in other festivals.

The film was also chosen to participate in Berlinale 2021, where it will be screened within the Panorama segment. The festival's 71st edition takes place in two stages: the Industry Event (1-5 March) and film screenings within the Summer Special (9-20 June). Amin was among the speakers during the talks organised by the Berlinale's World Cinema Fund (WCH) on the theme of 'Decolonising Cinema', held within the festival's Industry Event.

The first feature film by an Egyptian female director to have the distinction of premiering in Cannes (and now in Tribeca), Souad "revolves around the relationship of two teenage sisters in one of Egypt's Nile Delta cities, one of them holds a secret life in the virtual world," reads the brief released on IMDb.

As the Tribeca festival's website clarifies, "leading a double life, Souad presents different versions of herself to her conservative society and her tradition-flaunting peers."

Winner of the Cinegouna Springboard 2018 (industry segment of the Gouna Film Festival), the 93-minute drama stars Bassant Ahmed in the title role, alongside Basmala Elghaiesh (Rabab), Hussein Ghanem (Ahmed), Hagar Mahmoud (Wessam), Sarah Shedid (Amira), among others.

Souad is a co-production between Egyptian producer Sameh Awaad, marking his production debut, Tunisian producer Dora Bouchoucha, producer and screenwriter Mohamed Hefzy, Egyptian producer Mark Lotfy and Wim Wenders through Germany’s Road Movies. 

Preparing for its celebratory edition, the Tribeca Film Festival will screen 66 films by 81 filmmakers from across 23 countries. The line-up includes 56 world premieres, one international premieres, four North American premieres, one US premiere, and four New York premieres. The films were chosen from over 11,200 submissions.

The Tribeca Film Festival announced on Tuesday the complete line-up of films to be screened in its Feature Film Selection covering the following competitions: US Narrative Competition, Documentary, International Narrative, Spotlight, Spotlight Documentary, Viewpoints, Midnight, Movies Plus and Tribeca Critics' Week.

Running in June as a physical event, "the Festival’s 20th anniversary edition will be a celebration of audiences coming back together with comedic, music-centered, and socially-conscious films from diverse storytellers using art to inspire, illuminate and above all else, entertain," reads the festival's website.

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