GOODBYE JULIA and INSHALLAH A BOY selected for Melbourne International Film Festival

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GOODBYE JULIA and INSHALLAH A BOY selected for Melbourne International Film Festival

After their widely successful premieres on the Cannes Film Festival’s Croisette, Mohamed Kordofani’s GOODBYE JULIA and Amjad Al-Rasheed's INSHALLAH A BOY have been selected to screen at the upcoming edition of the Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF), which will be running from August 3rd to the 27th.

The two highly-acclaimed films will be presented at the MIFF's Africa & Middle East strand, where Kordofani's debut Sudanese drama feature GOODBYE JULIA will have two screenings — the first on Wednesday, August 9th at 6:15 pm, and the second on Sunday, August 20th at 9:15 pm.

Meanwhile, Amjad Al-Rasheed's INSHALLAH A BOY will have three screenings throughout the festival’s run-time — the first on Friday, August 4th at 8:45 pm; the second on Sunday, August 13th at 2 pm; and the last on Friday, August 18th at 3:45 pm.

Previously, the two films world premiered at the 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival, where GOODBYE JULIA took home the Un Certain Regard’s Freedom Prize and INSHALLAH A BOY was crowned with both the Gan Foundation and Rail d’Or awards.

GOODBYE JULIA follows the story of Mona — a northern Sudanese retired singer in a tense marriage — who is wracked by guilt after covering up a murder. In an attempt to make amends, she takes in the deceased’s southern Sudanese widow, Julia, and her son, Daniel, into her home.

Unable to confess her transgressions to Julia, Mona decides to leave the past behind and adjust to a new status quo, unaware that the country’s turmoil may find its way into her home and put her face to face with her sins.

The film stars Eiman Yousif, Siran Riak — the former Ms. South Sudan — Nazar Goma, and Ger Duany; is written and directed by Kordofani; and produced by Station Films’ acclaimed Sudanese filmmaker Amjad Abu Alala — the director of Sudan’s first-ever submission to the Academy Awards YOU WILL DIE AT TWENTY — in collaboration with producer Mohamed Al-Omda, who co-produced Yemen’s Berlin International Film Festival selection THE BURDENED.

A true example of Arab-European collaboration, the film is also co-produced by Baho Bakhsh and Safei Eldin Mahmoud (Red Star Films), Michael Henrichs (Die Gesellschaft), Khaled Awad and Mohamed Kordofani (Klozium Studios), Marc Irmer (Dolce Vita), Faisal Baltyuor (Cinewaves Films), Ali El-Arabi (Ambient Light), Adham El-Sherif (CULT), and Issraa Elkogali Häggström (RiverFlower). Additionally, MAD Solutions is handling the film’s worldwide sales.

Before it was released, GOODBYE JULIA also won MAD Solutions’ Grant Award at the CineGouna SpringBoard that was held at the fourth El Gouna Film Festival, Best Film Project in the Development Phase ($15,000), a certificate from the El Gouna Cinema Platform, a Mentorship Prize from the IEFTA, and the New Century Prize ($10,000).

On the other hand, INSHALLAH A BOY follows the recently widowed Nawal, who has to save her daughter and home following her husband’s death in a society where having a son is a game changer.

Directed by Al-Rasheed and co-written alongside Delphine Agut and Rula Nasser, the film stars Mouna Hawa, Haitham Omari, Salwa Nakkara, Yumna Marwan, Mohammad Al-Jizawi, Islam Al-Awadi, and Celina Rabab'a.
Additionally, the film was produced by Nasser and Abu Ayyash; co-produced by Youssef Abdelnabi, Raphaël Alexandre, and Nicolas Leprêtre; associate produced by Alaa Karkouti, Maher Diab, and Shahinaz El-Akkad; lensed by Kanamé Onoyama; edited by the prolific Ahmed Hafez; sound mixed by Nour Halawani; and scored by Jerry Lane. Also, Zeina Soufan and Nasser Zoubi served as the project's costume and production designers respectively.

In terms of the larger companies at play, the film was produced by Imaginarium Films and co-produced by Georges Films and Bayt Al-Shawareb. Meanwhile, MAD Solutions and Lagoonie Film Production are in charge of distributing it all over the Arab world and Pyramide International is handling international sales and distribution in France.
This film marks Al-Rasheed's second collaboration with MAD, as the distribution giant handled marketing for his short film THE PARROT, which he co-directed.