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Director Karim Hanafy's The Gate of Departure Takes Part in the Arab Film Festival Berlin

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Selected for Its German Premiere

Director Karim Hanafy's The Gate of Departure Takes Part in the Arab Film Festival Berlin


After winning 11 awards so far at international film festivals, director Karim Hanafy's The Gate of Departure lands its German premiere at the 7th Arab Film Festival Berlin (ALFILM) (6 - 13 April). The film is set to be screened on Sunday, April 9th, 2016.

Standing as the largest festival that provides a platform to the diversity of the Arab cinema, the Arab Film Festival Berlin specializes in screening feature films, as well as documentaries and experimental long and short films by Arab producers and directors. The festival also screens foreign films bringing focus to Arab issues so that the German audience, specifically, and European audience, generally, can be introduced to the Arab world closely.

In March, Karim Hanafy's The Gate of Departure earned four awards, along with a Certificate of Appreciation at the 64th Egyptian Catholic Center Cinema Festival. The Gate of Departure won the
Special Jury Award, Best Cinematography (Zaki Aref), Best Music (Rageh Daoud), jointly with the film Out of the Ordinary, and Best Actress in a Leading Role (Salwa Khattab), together with Naglaa Badr for her role in Out of the Ordinary. The Gate of Departure received a Certificate of Appreciation after it has competed in the 64th edition of the festival, as one of the best five Egyptian films in 2015 complied with the ethical and humanitarian criteria outlined by the Egyptian Catholic Center Cinema Festival.

The Gate of Departure has also marked the biggest number of awards at the 42nd Egyptian Cinema Film Association Festival 2016, as it received six awards. The awards are; Best Film, Best Director
(Karim Hanafy), Best Cinematography (Zaki Aref), Best Music (Rageh Daoud), Best Sound (Alaa El Kashef) and Best Poster Design (Theodore Amin). The Gate of Departure had its first award at Cairo International Film Festival (CIFF) 2014 where it landed as the only Egyptian official selection and won the Silver Pyramid Award for Best Artistic Contribution.

Recently, the film took part in the 4th Luxor Arab & European Film Festival within the Nights of Egyptian Cinema section, and the 3rd Sudan Independent Film Festival (SIFF) in Sudan. The film had its US premiere through the Arab Film Festival in San Francisco, which is one of the biggest and longest-standing annual independent film events screening modern contemporary films from and about the Arab world. It also took part in the Kalamazoo World Languages Film Festival in Michigan, USA, and the Silk Road Film Festival in Dublin, Ireland.

"You, who have always been here, you will be everywhere." The Gate of Departure is a story of a prophecy that has always haunted a son growing to manhood in his mother's desolated home. The son is unable to begin his journey beyond the boundaries of these walls repressed by feelings of guilt towards his mother, who chooses to imprison herself for the rest of her life, guarding her only son as she helplessly witnesses her beauty slipping away day by day. The sorrowful mother refuses to let go of the gift that life has granted her. Only a whirlwind of painful dreams that pave the way for her son's departure teaches her to accept her eternal solitude, thus opening the door for him to begin his long journey to himself.

Written and directed by Karim Hanafy, The Gate of Departure stars Salwa Khattab, Ahmed Magdy, Amaal Abdel Hady and Shams Labib. The film is produced by Khaial Art Production with support from Egypt's Ministry of Culture.

With MAD Solutions on board as the film's distributor in the Arab world through its distribution arm MAD Distribution, the company has released the film in Egyptian cinemas across Cairo for two weeks.

The Gate of Departure's screening time at Arab Film Festival Berlin (GMT +1)
Sunday, April 9th, 2016 - 07:00 pm at KINO ARSENAL