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Makary inaugurates Beirut International Women's Film Festival, honors renowned Egyptian actress Yousra

NNA - The seventh edition of “Beirut International Women's Film Festival”, organized by “Beirut Cinema Society”, opened under the theme of "Women for Leadership”. The inauguration of the festival, held at Casino du Liban, took place under the patronage of Caretaker Information Minister, Ziad Makary, in collaboration with Cedars Art Production, Sabbah Brothers, and in partnership with Casino du Liban and Grand Cinemas.

The opening event was attended by a crowd of ambassadors, artists, festival directors, Lebanese, Arab, and foreign filmmakers and producers, as well as political, diplomatic, artistic, media, and cultural figures.

The festival, which runs until April 19, honored during its inaugural event renowned Egyptian actress, Yousra, for her outstanding career in cinema and art, presenting her with the Tanit Award, a golden statue of a Phoenician goddess.

Organizers expressed their aim to overcome the logic of wars and violence, promoting peace, love, culture, and art, especially given the difficult circumstances Lebanon and the Arab world are facing. They highlighted the festival as an annual milestone and platform for filmmakers and open discussions, aiming to empower women and highlight their leadership roles.

The festival, chaired by Lebanese actress Carmen Lebbos, features various categories including dance films, short documentaries, animated films, short fiction films, Lebanese short films, long documentaries, and long fiction films. Several artists and actors serve as jury members, including Daniella Rahme, Georges Khabbaz, Badih Abou Chakra, and others.

Caretaker Minister of Information, Ziad Makary, delivered a speech stating that the festival has “crowned Beirut as the capital of media, art, culture, will, and love of life" despite the difficulties and challenges.

Minister Makary described the honoree, Yousra, as a symbol of positivity and resilience. He noted the significance of women in Arab cinema and the role of cinema in highlighting women's issues and promoting peace.

Moreover, the Information Minister emphasized the importance of partnerships between the public and private sectors to encourage women in cinema, drama, and media, praising the collaboration with the Beirut Cinema Society and Sabbah Brothers.

Makary concluded by thanking Yousra, Sadek Al-Sabbah, and the Beirut International Women's Film Festival, expressing admiration for Beirut's resilience and creativity.

In her acceptance speech, Yousra expressed gratitude for being honored, recalling her life's stages, memories, pains, laughter, and successes. She praised the Lebanese people for their resilience, love of life, and generosity, despite the crises they face.

Yousra also expressed her deep love for Lebanon and its people, acknowledging their strength and robustness.

The opening ceremony included a documentary about Yousra's life and career, a special video featuring pianist Michel Fadel, a performance by the Al-Fayhaa band, and a live performance by singer Bafou. Poet and sculptor Rudy Rahme presented sculptures to Yousra and producer Sadek Al-Sabbah, followed by a poetic recitation for the honoree.

 

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