The star-studded opening night of the Cairo International Film Festival scheduled for Tuesday has been cancelled and postponed to Wednesday 28 November by director Ezzat Abo Ouf, in light of the two 'million-man' protests - one by President Morsi's supporters and the other by his opponents - that have been scheduled for Tuesday.
Following President Mohamed Morsi's Thursday constitutional declaration, perceived by opponents as a move to consolidate his power, Tahrir Square was flooded with demonstrators.
According to Ahram's Arabic news website, the decision by CIFF management is for the safety of all guests and attendees, and to ensure the security of roads and traffic to and from the Cairo Opera House where the festival is taking place. However, the management confirmed that the closing ceremony on 6 December will take place as planned.
The Cairo festival in 2011 was cancelled in the wake of the January 25 Revolution.
This year, the festival will honour artistic director Onsi Abou Seif, as well as famed actress and singer Lebleba and multi-talented veteran actress Nelly.
Abdel Kader revealed that the organisers have invited 450 people from across the globe to attend the festival.
The Cairo Opera House - which is located in Gezira, connected by bridge to Tahrir Square - will host the 35th Cairo International Film Festival from 28 November to 6 December.