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Ahead of Announcing the Initial Nomination


With 14 new film critics this year, 75 film critics from all over the world started viewing Arab feature and documentary films produced in 2018 on Festival Scope to nominate films and filmmakers for the 3rd Annual Critics Awards, organized by the Arab Cinema Center (ACC). The winners will be announced during the next edition of the Cannes Film Festival.

Film Analyst Alaa Karkouti, Managing Partner of the Arab Cinema Center (ACC) and CEO of MAD Solutions, comments on the new edition, saying, "We couldn't be more proud that the Annual Critics Awards now brings highly-regarded names from all over the world together each year. We are very pleased that this has become a main annual occasion for celebrating the Arab film industry."

Film Critic Ahmed Shawky,Manager of the Critics Awards, says, "The Annual Critics Awards initiative is taking bigger steps toward supporting Arab films everywhere. With each passing year, more important critics from different countries join the jury, which guarantees that the best Arab films will be featured in international media. Seventy five film critics from thirty-three countries is a huge number that indicates the value of this independent initiative. We can't thank each and every single film critic enough for agreeing to give us their time and effort to participate in the jury committee."

Published by the Arab Cinema Center (ACC), the new issue of the Arab Cinema Magazine will feature an entire section covering everything about the 3rd Annual Critics Awards and the film critics.

The 1st Annual Critics Awards was held on the sidelines of the 70th Cannes Film Festival. The awards are given to the best Arab film productions every year in the following categories: Best Feature Film, Best Documentary Film, Best Director, Best Writer, Best Actress and Best Actor. For the first time in the history of Arab cinema, the jury brings together 75 of the most prominent Arab and international film critics from 33 countries from all over the world this year.

The final nominees for the Critics Awards were selected according to the following criteria: the films must have been premiered at international film festivals outside of the Arab world during 2018, and at least one of the production companies must be Arab (regardless of the size of its contribution to the production of the film). In addition, the films must be feature-length films (fiction or documentary).

List of film critics appointed for nominating and selecting the winners of the Annual Critics Awards (in alphabetical order):

Abdelkarim Ouakrim | Morocco, Abdelkrim Kadri| Algeria, Abdul Sattar Naji | Kuwait, Ahmed Shawky | Egypt, Ali Wajeeh | Syria, Alin TAŞÇIYAN | Turkey, Amal El Gamal | Egypt, Amber Wilkinson | UK, Ana Maria Bahiana | Brazil, USA, Andrew Mohsen | Egypt, Ásgeir H Ingólfsson | Iceland, Czech Republic, Bojidar Stefanov Manov | Bulgaria, Carmen Gray | New Zealand, UK, Chris Newbould | UK, UAE, Deborah Young | USA, Djia Mambu| Belgium, Dragan Rubesa | Croatia, Emad El Nouwairy | Kuwait, Erfan Rashid | Iraq, Italy, Essam Zakaria | Egypt, Fionnuala Halligan |UK, Gautaman Bhaskaran | India, Giona A. Nazzaro | Switzerland, Hammadi Gueroum| Morocco, Harri Römpötti | Finland, Hassan Haddad | Bahrain, Hassouna Mansouri | Tunisia, Hauvick Habéchian | Lebanon, Houda Ibrahim | Lebanon, France, Husam Asi | Palestine, UK, Ibrahim Alariss | Lebanon, Ibrahim Haj Abdi | Syria, Ida Madsen Hestman | Norway, Ikbal Zalila | Tunisia, Jay Weissberg | USA, Jim Quilty | Canada, Beirut, Kadhum Saloom| Iraq, Kais Kassem | Iraq, Sweden, Kaleem Aftab | UK, Khaled Mahmoud | Egypt, Khalid Ali | Sudan/UK, Khalil Demmoun| Morocco, Kiva Reardon | Canada, Lamia Guiga | Tunisia, Mahmoud Mahdy | Egypt, Massimo Lechi | Italy, Mohamed Atef | Egypt, Mohamed Benaziz | Morocco, Mohammed Bougalleb | Tunisia, Mohammed Chouika | Morocco, Mohamed Hashem | Egypt, Mohammed Rouda | Lebanon, Nabil Hadji | Algeria, Nadim Jarjoura | Lebanon, Nageh Hassan | Jordan, Narjes Torchani | Tunisia, Ola Kamel Al-Sheikh | Palestine, UAE, Ola Shafey | Egypt, Olivier Barlet | France, Ossama Abdel Fattah | Egypt, Pamela Biénzobas | Chile, France, Pamela Hutchinson | UK, Peter Stuart Robinson| UK, Canada, Pragya Mishra | UK, Rachid Naim | Morocco, Ramy Abd El Razek | Egypt, Rasha Hosny | Egypt, Rja Sair Al-Mtyry | Saudi Arabia, Ronnit Hasson | Sweden, Safaa Jibara Al-saleh| Iraq, UK, Sydney J. Levine | USA, Tarek Ben Chaabane | Tunisia, Tarek El Shinnawi | Egypt, Youssef Cherif Rizkallah | Egypt, Ziad Khuzai| Iraq.

Organized by MAD Solutions, the Arab Cinema Center (ACC) celebrates its fifth year since its inception in 2015. A non-profit organization registered in Amsterdam, ACC is an international promotional platform for Arab cinema as it provides the filmmaking industry with a professional window to connect with their counterparts from all over the world through a number of events that it organizes. ACC also provides networking opportunities with representatives of companies and institutions specialized in co-production and international distribution, among others. ACC's activities vary between film market main wings, introduction and networking sessions for Arab and foreign filmmakers, welcome parties, as well as meetings with international organizations and festivals, and the issuance of Arab Cinema Magazine to be distributed at the leading international film festivals and markets.

Furthermore, newsletter subscription is now available on ACC's website, allowing users to obtain digital copies of Arab Cinema Magazine, as well as news on ACC's activities, notifications of application dates for grants, festivals and offers from educational and training institutions, updates on Arab films participating at festivals, exclusive news on Arab Cinema LAB, and highlights from ACC's partners and their future projects.

ACC also launched an English-language Arab Cinema Guide, available on its website, which is a comprehensive cinematic guide that comprises a variety of tools presented collectively for the first time to offer information on Arab cinema to filmmakers inside and outside of the Arab world. It also aims to facilitate filmmakers' access to international markets and help film industry representatives to easily identify Arab film productions.

The Arab Cinema Center announced the launch of the MAD 3ARABI (Arab Flow) in Prague, Czech Republic. The festival aims to introduce the Arab culture and focus on the film and TV industry, flowing Arab entertainment and culture onto European shores, and also providing an extension for Arab filmmakers and content creators in the entertainment industry to reach new shores.