Adding to His Abundant Record of Awards and Recognitions
Rags and Tatters Receives Special Jury Award at the Transsaharien Festival
Continuing its successful festival marches around the world, Ahmed Abdallah's Rags and Tatters won Special Jury Award at International Film Festival Transsaharien in Zagora, Morocco. The festival's jury was headed by Palestinian filmmaker Michel Khleifi, whereas the jury members included notable directors Alia Khashouq and Amer Alwan, along with French screenwriter and producer Elizabeth Matic.
Written and directed by Ahmed Abdallah, Rags and Tatters unfolds a new experience in Egyptian cinema as the story builds up with minimal dialogue between the characters based on visual narration within a balanced equation of documentation and narration. The film tells the story of a prison inmate who escapes from jail following the incidents that took place on January 28th, 2011, when police forces were withdrawn from the streets and chaos prevailed. The film stars Asser Yassin who plays the leading role of the fugitive inmate who moves in a number of poor alienated Egyptian districts.
In September, 2013, the film was part of Toronto International Film Festival where it had its world premiere. Rags and Tatters has received several awards from international film events including the Golden Antigone Prize for the Best Narrative Feature at the 35th Cinemed International Mediterranean Festival of Montpellier in France. The film garnered 5 awards at the 40th Egyptian Film Association Festival; Best Film, Best Script and Best Director went to Ahmed Abdallah; Best Sound Editing to Ahmed Mostafa Saleh; and Best Film Poster award. Abdallah also received Best Director Award at the 62nd Egyptian Catholic Center Cinema Festival.
Rags and Tatters was part of the 7th Abu Dhabi Film Festival within the Narrative Features Competition. The film also took part at BFI London Film Festival, making it the only Arab film contending in the official competition of the prestigious film event in that year. Rags and Tatters also screened at the USA through Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy, Washington DC. Additionally, Rags and Tatters was on the list of the Egyptian films nominated to the Academy Awards' Foreign Language category.
Shot on location in Mansheyet Nasser and Old Cairo, Rags and Tatters co-stars Amr Abed, Mohamed Mamdouh, Seif Al Aswani, Yara Gobran and Latifa Fahmi. The film is produced by Mohamed Hefzy's Film Clinic in co-production with Mashrou', Ahmad Abdallah's new production house formed with Asser Yassin, and producer and writer Amr Shama, scriptwriter of After the Battle film.
Ahmed Abdallah started his career as a Film Editor in several films, the most distinctive of which is Ain Shams. In 2010, he presented his directorial debut Heliopolis, which tells the story of a group of people living in Heliopolis. Abdallah also directed Microphone, which is about independent music productions and underground art scene in the city of Alexandria, Egypt. Starring Khaled Abul Naga, Hani Adel, and Youssra Al Louzi, the film premiered in Egypt in January 26th, 2011, coinciding with the second day of the revolution at that time. Both of the two films were screened in previous installments of the Toronto International Film Festival.