The opening ceremony of the first edition of the post-COVID-19 JCC on Saturday evening October 20, was marked by the presence of Minister of Cultural Affairs Hayet Guettat Guermazi who, in a statement to the media, said she was very flattered to find again the joy of living through the cinema and to see this beautiful world come to attend this festival, after long periods of interruption and confinement.
The festival showcases 57 diverse films from 45 Arab and African countries, with screenings not only in cinemas but also in prisons and military barracks.
Under the slogan “Let’s dream, Let’s live”, the festival is taking place across the capital Tunis this week, with screenings and talks until Saturday.
Entries from Arab nations include films from Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Yemen, while from sub-Saharan Africa they include movies from Ghana, Madagascar, Mali, Somalia and South Africa.
The official selection also includes a documentary by Syrian filmmaker Amel Alzakout, “Purple Sea”, made from images filmed when she fled Syria and the boat on which she was travelling sank off the Greek coast.
Veteran Italian producer Enzo Porcelli is chair of the jury, alongside others including Angolan actor Hoji Fortuna, Egyptian film critic Tareq Al Shennawy, Iranian director Ahmad Bahrami and Haitian director Gessica Geneus.