Scandinavian film festival plans eight-film Arabic focus

Three documentaries, including Canada's At Night They Dance (pictured), will be part of the eight-film Arabic program to be featured at the 35th Göteborg International Film Festival, which kicks off in January.
October 14, 2011

Organizers of the 35th Göteborg International Film Festival, Scandinavia’s largest film festival, are planning an eight-film Arabic program for the upcoming edition, which will feature three documentaries.

The three docs that will be part of the program include At Night They Dance (pictured), a Canadian feature from Isabelle Lavigne and Stéphane Thibault that follows a family of belly dancers in working class Cairo. The film was a special jury prize winner at the last Hot Docs fest in Toronto.

No More Fear/La Khaoufa Baada al’Yaoum is from Tunisian director Mourad Ben Cheikh and focuses on the Tunisian revolution of early 2011 and the ousting of authoritarian president Ben Ali. The film had a special screening at the Cannes Film Festival last spring.

The third doc in the program hails from Iraq. In My Mother’s Arms, from directors Atia Al Daradji and Mohamed Al Daradji, is centered on the efforts to keep an orphanage in a dangerous section of Baghdad open. Mohamed Al Daradji was named Variety‘s Middle East filmmaker of the year in 2010.

“If generalizing, we suddenly realize that people living in other places on the Earth want, need, and are entitled to, the same human rights as we are,” said Marit Kapla, artistic director of the Göteborg International Film Festival. “Although an awareness has been with us before, it has nonetheless created a golden opportunity in history, right now, for greater understanding between groups of people around the world. Here, film can play a key role.”

The 35th edition of the Göteborg International Film Festival takes place from January 27 to February 6, 2012 in Göteborg, Sweden.

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news reporter at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joins the rs team with journalism experience following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.