Sam Abbas launches contest for female filmmakers

  • Tue,14 May 2019 01:19:12 PM

New Delhi, May 14 (IANS): Egyptian filmmaker Sam Abbas has unveiled an international contest for female filmmakers, with the winner's short film to be included in his upcoming feature "Alias Birth", which stars Indian-American actress Poorna Jagannathan.

The narrative or documentary short films must be three minutes long or shorter, directed by a woman and never previously screened, reports

The idea is to include the winning piece as part of a scene where the characters are watching a short film.

Abbas said, "I'm always fascinated by films that are split into segments by different directors and how you can see different styles and tastes mix and match into one. The first time I saw this was in '7 Days in Havana' and 'The Fourth Dimension'. I was struck by how each filmmaker added their own to an ultimate piece.

"It opens 'Alia's Birth' to the possibilities I may not have thought of. That's the beauty of collaboration."

"Alia's Birth" will star Poorna and Nikohl Boosheri. It tells the story of a female couple forced to spend the night apart. Catharine Daddario will also be a part of the film, which will be shot in New York this summer.

"While I can't talk much about the narrative, the importance of this short piece being female-directed is crucial. 'Alia's Birth' is female-led, from the acting to behind the camera. I find it easier to communicate and collaborate when working with women. I grew up surrounded by amazing women, and my favourite films are led by women."

Abbas is producing "Alia's Birth" through his recently formed ArabQ Films, the first-ever Arab-based LGBTQ-focused production company, with the newly launched Bolivian production company Anacronica and Nakai Mirtenbaum and backed by private investors across Latin America.


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