Nadia Loutfy A legendary Cinema Beauty from the Golden Age of Egyptian Cinema Born in Alexandrie, Paula Mohamed Shafik, (also known as Nadia Loutfy). Her artistic flair was discovered by prolific Producer Ramses Naguib, who introduced her to the audience through his film “Sultan” in 1958 where her assiduous performance was critically applauded marking that a new star was born. Nadia’s true stardom blasted off after presenting her most iconic role as a psychologically troubled blonde girl in Al Nadara Al Sawdaa (The Black Sunglasses) in 1963. Loutfy’s roles varied between portraying the romantic blue-blooded girl in Al Khattaya (The Sins), to finally master much abyssal roles as an Egyptian low-class marginalized woman in Qa’a Al Madina (The Bottom of the City) and Al Siman Wal Kharif (Autumn’s Quail, becoming the only actress to compete against the enthralling actress So’ad Hosni at that time. Throughout her momentous 30-year- long cinematic career, Loutfy’s copious repertoire includes nearly 75 films; most notably of which are Ala Waraq Sulifan (On a Silk Paper), Al Naser Salah Al-Din, Hoby Al Waheed (My Only Love), Al-Khattaya (The Sins), Abi Fawq Al Shagara (My Father atop of the Tree), Al Siman Wal Khareef (Autumn’s Quail), Al Nadara Al Sawdaa (The Black Sunglasses), Lel Regal Faqat (For Men Only), Qasr Al Shuq (Palace of Desire), Al Mostaheel (The Impossible), Al Ikhwa Al A’daa (The Enemy Brothers) and Bade’a Masabny. Loutfy collaborated with a string of Egypt’s most remarkable auteurs such as Atef Salem in Al Sabaa’ Banat (The 7 Girls); Hasan Al Imam in Al Khattaya (The Sins); Youssef Chahine in Al Naser Salah Al-Din, and Hussam El-Din Mustafa in Al Nadara Al Sawdaa (The Black Sunglasses). She also collaborated with a lineup of directors from the “new wave” generation including Hussien Kamal in Al Mostaheel (The Impossible); Ashraf Fahmy in Rehla Dakhel Imra’a (A Journey Inside a Woman’s Soul); Mohamed Rady in Al Hagez (The Barrier), and Khairy Beshara in Al Aqdar Al Damya (Bloody Fate). After making her final screen appearance in 1988 with Al Ab Al-Shar’ay (The legal Father), Nadia Loutfy announced her retirement as an actress and dedicated her life to philanthropy and political activism. Loutfy is a long-time nationalist and doughty advocate of Palestine’s independence; only 10 years after of pursuing acting career, she sought the path of public service. During the period between the War of Attrition in 1967 and the 6th of October War in 1973, Loutfy assembled her fellow actors and organized trips to the battlefront. She was also one of the foremost actresses who embark on a visit to Beirut following the Israeli invasion in 1982. Loutfy was also the first to join the ranks of Palestinian resistance with the late president Yasser Arafat, recording tens of videos about this atrociously traumatic incident and sharing them with international TV broadcast channels. Throughout her copious cinematic career, Nadia Loutfy reaped several awards including the Best Actress Award from the Egyptian Catholic Center Cinema Festival for her remarkable role in Al Sabaa Banat (The Seven Girls) and the National Film Organization award for her role in Ayam Bela Hob (Days without Love). She also received an award from Tangier International Film Festival; the Golden Appreciation Certificate from Morocco in 1968, in addition to a Golden Certificate of Appreciation from the Egyptian Association of Film Critics and Writers for her outstanding performance in Rehla Dakhel Imra’a (A Journey Inside a Woman’s Soul).
Noureddine Sail Born in 1948 One of the Most Prolific Auteur Filmmakers in the Arab World As film societies thrived and flourished in Morocco in the 1970s, Noureddine Sail’s name came forth to represent a significant hallmark in the budding movement. When Moroccan and Arab filmmakers sought contribution from French producers, Sail altruistically opened a gateway for TV production, offering an illustrious opportunity for aspiring auteurs. With his avid keenness, Sail played an important role in impelling the Moroccan government to aid the film industry, placing Morocco at the forefront of film production in the Arab world. Widely known during the last 11 years as Morocco’s foremost cinema man, Noureddine Sail worked as the Director of the Moroccan Cinematographic Centre, where he maneuvered to change the government’s policy, prompting it to support film distribution and production to attract international filmmakers to work in Morocco. Before his assignment as Director of the Morrocan Cinematographic Centre, Moroccan cinema presented 3 or 4 feature films annually. Later on, as film productions have recently boosted to include 25 films per year, the Moroccan audience regained their chauvinistic passion towards national films leading to a boost in local revenues; from 3% to 35%, landing Morocco as an international and regional film hub for renowned filmmakers and cinephiles. Advocating cinematic culture, Morocco now hosts 40 international and regional film festivals annually. Part of his contribution to Moroccan film industry, Sail supported short filmmaking industry and passed a rigid law, which compels private production companies to submit 3 short films before embarking on a feature film project. The law acknowledged the eminence of short films and productions hopped up from 7 films a year to more than 60 films. Being a fervid proponent of adept local talents; Sail has targeted establishing a solid creative commercial base for Moroccan film industry; driven in this by a firm belief that this is way more effective than producing a single masterpiece every ten years. For him, cinema must address all classes and minds from different walks of lives. Noureddine started off his career as a philosophy professor before he took a turn into criticism and film industry. Influenced by great German philosopher Immanuel Kant, Sail consummated his fervent passion for cinema with philosophy; he learned about life from spending time watching films on the silver screen, insisting that this type of art "saved him from life". Sail’s cinematic career started as a scriptwriter and a producer for a string of films including Waghan Le Wagh (Face to Face, 1976), Al-Safar Al-Kabeer (The Great Travel), Badis, and Lala Hoby (Lala my Love) He contributed to the establishment of the Cinema Clubs Association in Morocco in 1973. He headed the association for 10 years and worked on uplifting its standards with adding authentic Moroccan cultural qualities to it. In the interim, Sail accessed the world of television, where he gained an integral experience through working at the French station Canal + Horizon, in the mid-eighties, and then Oufuq (Horizon) Channel. Owing to his powerful distinguished position, he opened the doors for filmmakers from countries which did not occupy a discernible space on the international filmmaking scene. He was then appointed as Director of the state-run Moroccan TV channel 2M Channel, where he worked on resurrecting the channel, uprooting it from its languish state. In addition to backing local filmmakers, Noureddine cleverly sought to elevate the channel’s level by endorsing co-production projects, inviting prolific Arab filmmakers such as Youssef Chahine and Elia Suleimanb to take part in Moroccan co-productions. After leaving his position, the channel continued to walk on his path. An assiduous patron of arts, Sail supervised remarkably extolled festivals including Morocco’s National Film Festival and Marrakech International Film Festival. Commenting on freedom of expression, Noureddine says, “I respect the other’s opinion as long as our discussion remained on civilized and courteous grounds. A conversation takes an impudently insolent path when entities exceed limitations either by setting about a physical assault or extortion. I respect other’s opinion even if the other party is uneducated, for this reason, we are in deep need to edify this “other”. To those who always reject an idea before seeing it, you should do a coherently meticulous research before arguing. A lot of people protest against films they have not even seen; you have the total freedom not to watch a film but you cannot hinder anyone from enjoying a film.”
Born in 1939 Volker Schlöndorff’s unremitting artistic record, which started in the early 1960s and is still burgeoning, is venerated as a representation of the revolutionary cultural and aesthetic changes which took over Germany and Europe at that time. A strikingly lauded award-winning director, producer, writer and actor, Schlöndorff’s voluminous repertoire extends to include tens of feature films, shorts and documentaries across Germany, France and USA for both cinema and television. Schlöndorff also did not limit his talent to only directing films, yet he expanded his métier into the world of operas. Growning up in Germany, Schlöndorff moved to France to study political science at the Sorbonne University. His ardent passion for cinematography propelled him to enroll in the highly regarded Institut des Hautes Etudes Cinématographiques (IDHEC). There, he met the meritorious French director Louis Malle, who offered him an opportunity to work as an assistant director. In 1960, Schlöndorff ‘s career as a director blasted off with his directorial debut Wen kümmert's? (Who Cares?), a short film about French expats who live in Frankfurt, Germany. Following his first film, Schlöndorff directed the critically acclaimed short documentary Méditerranée (Mediterranean), which was markedly applauded by French New Wave legend, Jean Luc Godard. In 1966, Schlöndorff helmed his first feature film Der junge Törless (Young Torless), based on the autobiography of Austrian writer Robert Musil. Epitomizing pre-WWI German society, the film delves into the drastically sadistic psyche of a group of students at an Austrian military academy at the beginning of the 20th century. The film garnered huge success, earning Schlöndorff a FIPRESCI prize from the International Federation of Film Critics. Although Schlöndorff was not among the Oberhausen Manifesto, a throng of 26 young German filmmakers who founded the New German Cinema movement, Young Torless soon became an emblem for the 1960s new wave, which called for revitalizing Germany’s filmmaking culture. Schlöndorff’s second feature film A Degree of Murder grabbed the audience’s attention for its gusty illustration of the wide-spread youth’s counterculture which swept over Europe during the sixties. The film’s score was composed by Brian Jones, founder and bandleader of The Rolling Stones. Inspired by memorable literary works, Schlöndorff made his first production attempt and directed The Lost Honour of Katharina Blum. Based on Nobel Prize winning German author Heinrich Böll, the film portrays the mass hysteria which invaded Germany as a reflection to the McCarthyism’s frenzies of communists’ affiliations during the 1950s in the USA. Schlöndorff's next film, The Tin Drum, was a cinematic adaptation of prolific Nobel Prize winning writer Günter Grass. The film was an eminent breakthrough for Schlöndorff, winning him a Palme d’Or award at the Cannes Film Festival in 1979 and the Best Foreign Language Film at the 52nd Academy Awards. In 1981, Schlöndorff made his first English-language film Swann in Love, featuring distinguished actor Jeremy Irons and French superstar Alain Delon. Schlöndorff then went to Hollywood to direct the television adaptation of Arthur Miller’s celebrated play Death of a Salesman. Starring Dustin Hoffman and John Malkovich, both actors received an Emmy Award for their outstanding performances. In 1990, he presented The Handmaid’s Tale, a cinematic depiction of Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel of the same name. The film starred a stellar of preeminent actors including veteran actor Robert Duvall and Faye Dunaway and was entered into the 40th Berlin International Film Festival. Schlöndorff continued to direct films both in the USA and Europe; his cinematic record extends to include 20 feature films, 6 TV films, 13 shorts and documentaries, in addition to films which he produced. His most recent film, the distinguished WWII drama Diplomacy received its world premiere at the 64th Berlin International Film Festival in 2014.
Eminent French intellect Jack Lang has made his first steps into the world of fame as a significant politician, holding high-profile ministerial positions such as the Minister of Culture and then the Minister of Education, his career was his gateway to the world of filmmaking where he had a great influence. Lang is the founder and producer of Festival du Monde in Nancy, France, and became the director of Nancy University Theatre from 1963 to 1972. He then became director of the Théâtre National de Chaillot from 1972 to 1974. Lang was also the co-founder of the Union of the Theatres of Europe while concurrently he taught international law for 10 years from 1971 to 1981. In 1997, he took part at the 47th Berlin International Film Festival as a Jury President. Among his amply and remarkable achievements was that he initiated the cultural event “La Fete de la Musique” (French for The International Music Day) which has become a world-widely celebrated event every year on June 21st, where musicians around the globe in that day express their various tastes of music through different ways. Born on September 2nd, 1939, Jack Lang is a member of the French Socialist Party. He was appointed in several high-profile positions such as the Minister of Culture; for two rounds (1981- 1986) and (1988-1992); and the Minister of Higher Education from 1992 to 1993 and from 2002 to 2002. Lang studied political science at the Institutd' Études Politiques de Paris, and endeavored to receive a postgraduate degree in public law. Landing in ministerial posts more than once, Jack served also as Mayor of the city of Blois, France, from 1989 to 2000. In addition, He was elected twice to be a member of the National Assembly of France for Loir-et-Cher.