release date November 17 2016
MoviePigs in Collaboration with the Arab Cinema Center (ACC) Kick Off the Arab Cinema Week in New York
In collaboration with the Arab Cinema Center (ACC), the MoviePigs platform kicks off tomorrow the first round of the Arab Cinema Week in New York(November 18-24) screening 14 films from all over the Arab world.

Perihan Abou-Zeid, Founder of Movie Pigs and Manager of the Arab Cinema Week, said, "In its first round, this event, which is scheduled to continue its run in New York, will provide a whole new perspective of the Arab indie films in New York through the film screenings. Several meetings are also slated to be held on the sidelines of the festival."

The Arab Cinema Week will witness the presence of the Egyptian well-known satirist Bassem Youssef, where he will be part of a discussion after the screening of the feature documentary Tickling Giants by American filmmaker Sara Taksler, which tells the story of Youssef's life when he leaves his job as a heart surgeon to become a full-time comedian. Bassem created the satirical show, Al Bernameg; the weekly program that quickly became the most viewed television program in the Arab world, with 30 million viewers per episode.

The Arab Cinema Week will also host Tunisian star Dhafer L'Abidine, who is going to take part in the panel discussions for the two award-winning Tunisian films; As I Open My Eyes, which won more than 20 international awards, and the winner of two awards from the Berlin International Film Festival in 2016, Inhebek Hedi.

Besides, the Egyptian young star Jamila Awad will be attending a discussion after the screening of the film Hepta: The Last Lecture, the highest-grossing romantic film in the history of the Egyptian cinema making more than EGP 27 million.

The one-week even will also screen the francophone film Mariam by Saudi filmmaker Faiza Ambah, which is about a French Muslim teenager, Mariam, who must choose between her hijab & school when France passes a law in 2004 banning religious symbols from public schools.
Two Egyptian films are slated to screen as part of the event, namely; Nawara starring Menna Shalabi, who won the Best Actress Award for her role in the film at the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) in 2015, and Zay Ood El Kabreet (Like a Matchstick), Hussein Al Imam's last film and only directorial work. In addition, the two documentary films In Search of Oil and Sand by directors Wael Omar and Philippe Dib, and Whose Country? By Mohamed Siam.

The Arab Cinema Week will host the two films that will represent their countries in the 2017 Academy Awards, the Jordanian film 3000 Nights by Palestinian director Mai Masri, and the Lebanese film Very Big Shot by Mir-Jean Bou Chaaya. The screening program will include from Algeria, the feature film Let Them Come by director Salem Brahimi, and from Palestine the film The Idol, inspired by the life events of young Palestinian singer Mohammed Assaf, directed by Golden Globe winner for Best Foreign Language Film for his film Paradise Now (2005), director Hany Abu-Assad.

The screening of the documentary Yallah! Underground by Farid Eslam will also take place. The film follows some of today's most important and progressive underground artists from Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Palestine, through years of rapid change from 2009 to 2013.

MoviePigs is an Egyptian online platform that targets the Arab expats residing in the United States, Canada, and Europe. Powered by the passion of promoting Arabic indie cinema abroad, the platform offers streaming high-quality Arabic indie films with English subtitles to open doors for Arab cinema aficionados to connect with creative Arab filmmakers.