Revived Cairo Film Festival To Screen Previously Banned ‘Wall of Heroism’

The lineup and configuration of the revived Cairo Film Festival is starting to shape up with a mix international and Arab films, including the world premiere of “Wall of Heroism,” by Mohamed Rady, a war pic shot in 1998 but never released for political reasons.

“Heroism” is about the lead-up to and the events of the Arab-Israeli October War in 1973 and has reportedly been banned by the Egyptian military.

The 17 Arab pics unspooling in Cairo also comprise, among other titles, the Middle East premiere of Palestinian director Najwa Najjar’s life-under-occupation drama “Eyes of a Thief”; Emirati director Noujom Al-Ghanem’s “Red Blue Yellow”; Egyptian helmer Ahmad Abdalla’s big-budget psychodrama “Decor”; and Syrian documentary “Silvered Water, Syrian Self Portrait,” co-directed by Ossama Mohamad and Wiam Simav Bedirxa.

David Cronenberg’s “Maps to the Stars”; Jean-Luc Godard’s “Goodbye to Language”; John Boorman’s “Queen and Country”; and Volker Schlondorff’s “Diplomacy” are among international titles selected so far.

As previously announced, the opener will be Fatih Akin’s “The Cut,” with star Tahar Rahim expected in tow.

Cairo, which is the oldest festival in the Arab and African worlds belonging to international fest org, FIAPF, is back with veteran Egyptian film critic Samir Farid at the helm as artistic director. Farid reviewed films for Variety out of Cairo between 1981 and 1985.

The prestigious fest was cancelled in 2011 and also in 2013 after a a rocky 2012 edition.

Farid has also decided to program an industry component, called Industry Forum, which will run November 12-16 in the Open Air Theatre of the Cairo Opera House.

The 36th edition of the Cairo fest will run Nov. 9-18.

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