Basil Khalil's Short Film AVE MARIA Wins Best Director at Cervignano Film Festival, Italy

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Continuing Its Award-Filled Festival Tour

Basil Khalil's Short Film AVE MARIA Wins Best Director at Cervignano Film Festival, Italy

Basil Khalil's short film AVE MARIA won Best Director in the Documentaries and Short Movies section at Cervignano Film Festival in Italy, which closed on Sunday, 26th September.

AVE MARIA had its world premiere in the Short Film Competition at the Cannes Film Festival last May, followed by Best Screenplay Award at France's longest-standing short film festival, Festival du Film Court de Grenoble. The film also received a Special Mention for Best Live Action Short Film at the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival, North America's largest short film festival in addition to 1st place award in the HP Bridging The Borders Award, presented by Cinema Without Borders.

To date AVE MARIA has been warmly received at 42 international film festivals across 19 countries, including Australia, France, Italy, Taiwan, South Korea, Mexico, USA, Sweden, Greece, UK with more being announced each week.

The 14 minute film tells the story of the Nuns of the 'Sisters of Mercy' Convent, in the middle of the West Bank wilderness, who have their daily routine of silence and prayer disrupted when a family of Jewish settlers come knocking at their door for help after crashing into the convent's wall.

The title of the film, "AVE MARIA", is Latin for "Hail Mary", an important Roman Catholic prayer. The film was written by Basil Khalil and Daniel Yez, and stars Maria Zreik, Huda Al Imam, Shady Srour, Ruth Farhi and Maya Koren. The film is produced by Incognito Films in Paris with the support of Robert Bosch Stiftung Fund in Germany.

French broadcaster Canal+ has bought the French pay-TV rights exclusively. MAD Solutions is the film's distributor in the Arab world and Ouat Media, an Academy Award winning sales company, is handling AVE MARIA's international distribution. Owned and operated by Channel Zero Inc, Ouat Media has contributed to the distribution of many short- and long award-winning films worldwide.