The selection includes documentaries and fiction, among them works that received important recognition and awards at prominent Arab and international festivals. Seven of the films are having their Arab world premiere and 11 are by female directors from Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Algeria, France, Spain, Switzerland, Cuba, Brazil, Iran and Germany.
Among the highlights of the Arab films in this year's programme is Their Algeria (Algeria-France-Qatar-Switzerland, 2020), written and directed by Lina Soualem, winner of Best Arab Film at the Gouna Film Festival's Feature Documentary Competition, and A Home of One's Own (Lebanon-Jordan-Egypt, 2019) by Ruba Attieh, which was nominated for Tanit d'Or for Best Documentary Feature Film at Carthage Film Festival (2019).
The programme will also include other important works such as My Darling Supermarket (Brazil-Denmark, 2019) by Tali Yankelevich, A Disfunctional Cat (Germany, 2020), As Above, So Below (Lebanon, 2020) written and directed by Sarah Francis, Dad's Leaving (France, 2020) by Pauline Horovitz, Blue Eyes and Colorful My Dress (Germany, 2020) by Polina Gumiela, among others.
The programme also includes Mothers in Focus segment with several short films produced in 2021, directed by Egyptian women filmmakers and which focus on motherhood. The list includes The Flower of Maryam by Hadeel Adel, Mama, I Want to Tell You Something by Eman Magdy, Masrya by Asmaa Gamal, Flatmates by Rania Zahra and Like Mother Like Daughter by Nada Hegazy.
International film selection will showcase a number of internationally awarded films, among them In A Whisper (Spain-France-Switzerland-Cuba, 2019) by Heidi Hassan and Patricia Pérez Fernández, which won the Best Feature Documentary at IDFA International Film Festival (2019) where it also premiered, and a Special Mention in Documentary Competition of the Athens International Film Festival (2020), as well as Babenco: Tell Me When I Die by Bárbara Paz (Brazil, 2019), which won Best Documentary on Cinema at Venice Film Festival (2019) among dozens of other awards and nominations.
Apart from film screenings, the 14th Caravan will hold seminars with women filmmakers that will be taking place online at 7pm Cairo time via Zoom. The meetings will feature Bárbara Paz, Lina Soualem Sarah Francis, Ruba Attieh and Patricia Pérez Fernández. Their films will be available online to the Arab audience for 48 hours.
On 10 November, the Caravan’s educational segment will present an online discussion with Egyptian filmmaker Amal Ramsis, who is also Caravan’s founder and director, as well as meetings with Tunisian academic Azza Chaabouni and Algerian director and writer Habiba Djahnine.
In addition, numerous workshops will take place on the sidelines of the screenings on November 12 and 13, targeting Arab filmmakers who have made strides in their production up to the initial stage of editing. The workshops focus on the creative documentary skills, development, rough-cut, in addition to The One Minute Workshop "Correspondence Between Women".
According to filmmaker Ramsis, the 14th edition of the festival is taking place without support from any official body and with an aim to support women filmmakers and boost audience awareness about their work.
“We are happy that the Caravan continues to present its content for the 14th consecutive round. This is a success in its own, putting in mind that many festivals do not manage to sustain for this amount of years, often due to the financial obstacles. We have managed to secure the continuation with the very limited resources while prioritising the choice of films, cinematic language, creating professional training opportunities and as such contributing to the industry at large,” Ramsis commented.
An independent initiative, the Between Women Film Caravan was launched in Egypt in 2008. It is run by a group of female filmmakers seeking to present cinema through mobile screenings and shows. Supporting the role of women in the cinema industry, the Caravan also creates vibrant connections with the industry on an international level, and specifically within the Arab world.
The Caravan plays an active role in the field of film, providing women technical training in directing, production, editing and photography. It also supports cinematic projects for women in any of the production stages.
Since its establishment, the Caravan has screened feature and short films, documentaries and animated films from over 60 countries.
The 14th edition of Between Women Film Caravan will take place online from 4 to 13 November. More details regarding films viewing and participation in the seminars and workshops will be revealed soon.
For more arts and culture news and updates, follow Ahram Online Arts and Culture on Twitter at @AhramOnlineArts and on Facebook at Ahram Online: Arts & Culture