release date November 28 2021
Our River....Our Sky Lands its Arab World Premiere at Cairo International Film Festival
Iraqi film Our River...Our Sky, by Maysoon Pachachi  landed its Arab world premiere at the Horizons of Arab Cinema Competition of the 43rd Cairo International Film Festival (November 26th to December 5th).
In the presence of the film’s director Maysoon Pachachi, and writer Irada Al-Jubori, the film’s screening witnessed a massive turnout, and was followed by a panel discussion where the audience interacted with the film’s creator. The film is slated to have its second screening on Sunday, November 28th, at 9:30 PM, Ewart Hall – AUC.
In parallel with its screening at the festival, the film’s official teaser trailer was released across the various social media platforms. Watch the trailer below:
Cairo International Film Festival is one of the oldest and most celebrated festivals in the Arab world and Africa. It is the only festival in the Arab and African region to be accorded category “A” status by the International Federation of Film Producers Associations in Paris (FIAPF).
Our River...Our Sky, had a full house screening for its world premiere screening at the 27th edition of Sarajevo Film Festival and won rave reviews from critics and audiences alike.
 “An ensemble piece, terrifically acted and perfectly written” wrote the famous Film Critic E. Nina Rothe on MIME website. She also praised Maysoon Pachachi’s works, saying: “There is a cross cutting poetic theme that runs throughout Maysoon Pachachi's work.” and described the collaboration between producer Talal Al-Muhanna and Maysoon as “An inspiring collaboration”.
The narrative in Our River…Our Sky (aka Kulshi Makoo in Arabic) is set against a background of sectarian violence in the last week of 2006, between Christmas and the Adha Eid.  It tells the stories of ordinary Iraqis trying to live their everyday lives in Baghdad, the capital; despite unpredictable violent events, which put them in peril. Sara, a single mother and novelist, shocked into silence by the surrounding violence, has been unable to write one word of fiction.  Shortly before the New Year, following unexpected news, Sara and her neighbors brace themselves for an uncertain future while trying to sustain a fragile sense of hope.
Our River...Our Sky won the $100,000 IWC Filmmaker Award at Dubai International Film Festival and was written by Pachachi in collaboration with her Baghdad-based co-writer Irada Al-Jubori.  The film was initially presented at the Producers Network in Carthage and later supported by prominent institutions in the Middle East, including Arab Fund for Arts and Culture (AFAC), Abu Dhabi Music & Art Foundation and Doha Film Institute.  The film was supported in Europe by Eurimages, CNC, Visions Sud Est and British Film Institute, amongst others, and was awarded The Cell Post Production award at Malmo Arab Film Festival Market Forum in 2020.  
The film is written by Maysoon Pachachi who co-wrote it with Irada Al-Jubori. The cast includes Darina Al Joundi (as Sara), Basim Hajar, Meriam Abbas and renowned Iraqi actor Mahmoud Abo Al Abbas.  The production was initially developed by Oxymoron Films (UK) and Linked Productions (Kuwait) and made in co-production with its other main producers Les Contes Modernes (France) and Neue Mediopolis Filmproduktion (Germany).  MAD Solutions handles the film’s distribution across the Arab world. 
Maysoon Pachachi is a London-based filmmaker of Iraqi origin who studied philosophy at University College London and attended London Film School as a student of British director Mike Leigh.  She was a documentary and drama film editor and, since 1994, has worked as an independent documentary filmmaker, mostly making films set in the Arab world.  Her films include Iranian Journey (2000), Return to the Land of Wonders (2004) and Our Feelings Took the Pictures: Open Shutters Iraq (2008).  Open Shutters received a Jury Special Mention at Arab Film Festival Rotterdam.   
Maysoon taught editing and directing in a number of countries and cities, including the UK, Palestine, Gaza, Al Quds,and Birzeit. In 2004, with her colleague Kasim Abid, she co-founded the Independent Film and Television College, a free-of-charge film-training center in Baghdad, whose students produced 17 short documentaries that were selected in regional and international film festivals. 
Irada Al-Jubori is an Iraqi writer, researcher and women's rights activist who has received a master's degrees from the Faculty of Fine Arts, and obtained a doctoral degree from the Faculty of Information, at the University of Baghdad. Her doctoral thesis was on the image of women in Iraqi cinema from 1946 to 1994. Before she co-wrote Our River...Our Sky, Al Jabbouri collaborated with Maysoon Pachachi on a project called Open Shutters Iraq. This project was exemplified by a photo gallery and a bilingual book, and it became the focus of a documentary film by Maysoon Pachachi later on.