Two films from the Arab world made it to this year’s International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR), both competing for the main award in the Tiger Competition: Agate Mousse by Selim Mourad from Lebanon, and Black Medusa by Ismaël and Youssef Chebbi from Tunisia.
The 50th IFFR will take place online between 1 and 7 February.
The festival will screen a large selection of films from around the world in all of its competitive sections and beyond.
Written and directed by Selim Mourad, Agate Mousse (Moss Agate) stars Elie Boudjok, Selim Mourad, and Tamara Saade.
The film will have its world premiere at the IFFR.
Black Medusa is a 2021 thriller written by Youssef Chebbi, who also directed it together with Ismaël.
The film stars Nour Hajri in the role of Nada, a young woman leading a double life. “During the daytime, she’s quiet and reserved, but after dark, she dives into the nightlife of Tunis and picks up men,” reads the synopsis revealed by the IFFR.
Black Medusa will also have its world premiere during the Rotterdam festival.
The two films are the only Arab entries across all competitive sections of the IFFR.
Other sections comprising of international films include the Big Screen Competition, the Ammodo Tiger Short Competition, and the Limelight competition.
The festival’s anniversary edition will take place online through the IFFR platform.
“With the online platform at the heart of the reimagined format, we are keeping with our long-established tradition of innovation and experimentation and continue to offer a unique hub for our filmmaking community to access emerging film talent. We look forward to celebrating our 50th edition, kicking off our anniversary online with our community of makers, partners, supporters, and audience, through a February programme brimming with works by bold new voices and established filmmakers that are sure to strike a chord,” Festival Director Vanja Kaludjercic commented in the official press release.