07/06/2014

Mohammed Hefzy, Egyptian producer and director of the Ismailia Film Fest

"I usually work with first and second-time directors"

Events and Festivals, Egypt

Euromed Audiovisual met MEDIS member Mohamed Hefzy last month in Cannes. 

Originally a scriptwriter, Hefzy is the founder and head of Film Clinic, the Egyptian production house that produced or co-produced such successful titles as Cairo 678, Rags and Tatters, Villa 69 and Excuse My French. But he is also the director of the Ismailia Film Festival for Documentaries and Shorts, running since Thursday in Egypt. This year, it is running its second co-production platform, with documentary film projects in development from all over the Arab world.

In this video, the producer talks about his latest feature film projects. The first is Sherif el-Bendary’s first feature film project Two Rooms and a Parlour, the tale of Khalil, 70, who has to open up to the world after his wife dies, based on a short story by Ibrahim Aslan, to be co-produced by French producer Marianne Lère from Joparige Films. (Two Rooms and a Parlour is also taking part in this year's Med Film Factory development programme.) The second is Mohamed Diab's second feature (after Cairo 678), Clash, a political action thriller set inside a police truck containing two groups of opposing protesters, to be co-produced by the Dubai-based EMC Media.

He also speaks briefly about the Ismailia Film Festival Co-production Platform:

“With co-productions platforms, pitching markets, I think the benefit is not really the money, but it’s more the exposure, the media, the press and being able to meet people, the networking, which is really the best prize that filmmakers can get.”

“This year we have films from all over the Arab world. Our platform is not exclusively for Arab directors, but for any filmmaker with an Arab subject and who is possibly looking for an Arab co-producer.”

Interview in English

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