Yousry Nasrallah to receive Golden Pyramid Award at Cairo Int'l Film Festival

Ahram Online , Wednesday 21 Jun 2023

Acclaimed Egyptian filmmaker Yousry Nasrallah is to receive Golden Pyramid Award for Lifetime Achievement at the 45th (CIFF) scheduled for November 2023.

Yousry Nasrallah


Nasrallah's decades-long career and numerous awards have earned him this recognition. Recently, he was named the head of the short film competition jury at the fifth edition of MedFest Egypt, a festival that combines filmmaking and health-related social issues, taking place in September 2023.

The 45th edition of CIFF, taking place from 15-24 November 2023, will have Hussein Fahmy as its president and Amir Ramses as the director. Fahmy previously held the same position between 1998 and 2001, while Ramses returns to the festival in the same role as last year (2022).

President Fahmy praised Nasrallah's selection for the festival's top award, describing him as a "unique director and his works are unforgettable, and extremely important in the history of Egyptian cinema. I also cherish him as a friend and colleague."

Ramses highlighted that many of Nasrallah's works have achieved international success and had a profound impact on young directors. Ramses also shared that Nasrallah's films have contributed to his own cinematic development, "just as he has influenced many of my generation."

The Golden Pyramid Award for Lifetime Achievement is the highest honour at the Cairo International Film Festival, presented to exceptional Egyptian and international cinematic figures. Previous recipients include actress Lebleba, actress Nelly, screenwriter Wahid Hamed, and Hungarian director Bela Tarr, among others.

As one of the oldest film festivals in Egypt and the Arab region, the CIFF is registered under Category A at the International Federation of Producers in Paris (FIAPF).

Yousry Nasrallah is an internationally acclaimed director and screen writer. He studied at the Higher Institute for Cinema in Cairo and launched his career in the field as a film critic for Al-Safeer newspaper and as an assistant director in Lebanon.

He then worked as an assistant director with the late Youssef Chahine in a number of films starting with Wadaan Bonaparte (Adieu Bonaparte, 1985).

His first feature film, Summer Thefts (1988), screened the same year at Cannes in the Directors’ Fortnight selection. A few years later, Mercedes (1993) was selected at the Locarno Film Festival. His other works include Sobian W-Banat (On Boys, Girls and the Veil, 1995) and Al-Madina (The City, 1999), which was awarded Locarno’s Special Jury Prize.

His eponymous book-to-screen adaptation of Elias Khoury’s novel The Gate of Sun was in the Festival de Cannes’ Official Selection in 2004.

He then directed Genenet Al-Asmak (The Aquarium, 2008) and Ehky Ya Sharhazad (Tell Me a Story, Scheherazade, 2009), which was screened at the Venice Film Festival. 

His film Brooks, Meadows and Lovely Faces was presented in the Official Competition at the Locarno Film Festival in 2016.

In 2023, the Locarno Film Festival announced that it has started restoring The Gate of Sun.

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