02/08/2012

Lebanese and Egyptian shorts finalists in YouTube film fest

Niam Itani and Ramy El-Gabry’s short films are among the 10 finalists in Your Film Festival, YouTube's first film festival

Events and Festivals, Egypt, Lebanon

Lebanese and Egyptian shorts finalists in YouTube film fest

Lebanon’s Super. Full. by Niam Itani and Egypt’s This Time by Ramy El-Gabry have made it to the final of Your Film Festival, YouTube’s first film festival created by American director Ridley Scott.

Niam Itani’s 13-minute Super. Full. is a short live action movie filmed on location in Qatar about a poor disabled couple chasing a dream. The man promises to take his wife to a fancy hotel for her birthday dinner.

Ramy El-Gabry’s This Time tells the urban legend of a son abandoning his mother to the kindness of strangers. The 11-minute film combines familiar vignettes of Cairo life with slow and careful cinematography.

Of 15,000 short films submitted to Your Film Festival from all over the world, only 50 made it to its semi-final . Now there are only 10 finalists. As such, Itani and El-Gabry have won a ticket to the next Venice Film Festival, where their films will be screened alongside those of the other eight finalists, including two Americans, one Australian, one Brazilian, one Bolivian, one Portuguese, and one Spanish.

“These ten finalists have achieved something quite remarkable and are all clearly talents to watch,” has said Ridley Scott. “People may be surprised to know that making a short film is very difficult, but these filmmakers have all succeeded in realizing their visions and I congratulate them on this achievement.”

The winner is to direct a film on a budget of $500,000 with Ridley Scott and Michael Fassbender. Scott and Fassbender, who worked together on Prometheus, will choose and announce the winner during the Venice Film Festival.

Until then, IItani is currently working on her debut feature, Shadow of a Man, about a car mechanic in the mountains in Lebanon, for which she has participated in Med Film Factory, a programme for directors and producers co-financed by Euromed Audiovisual.

 

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