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Malmö Arab Film Festival: Celebrating Arab Talent in Sweden

arab cinema cinema Egyptian Artists Egyptian cinema Egyptian Films
Malmö Arab Film Festival: Celebrating Arab Talent in Sweden
written by
Cairo 360
Image via Instagram

Dubbed the Hollywood of the Middle East, there’s absolutely zero doubt that Egyptian cinema stands unrivalled. It makes sense that our movies would be celebrated worldwide, right? This April, several Egyptian movies will be celebrated in the 14th edition of the esteemed Malmö Arab Film Festival (MAFF) in Sweden!

Having debuted in 2011, Malmö Arab Film Festival is an annual festival that has now become the most influential and largest Arabic film festival in all of Europe—besides being the only one in Scandinavia. Founded by the Palestinian director Mohamed Keblawi, the festival aims to shed light on Arab cinema and to celebrate diversity in cinema.

Image via MAFF

The festival showcases around 80 features, short films, and documentaries from across the Arab world, representing the richness of Arab cinema. From competition sections to panoramas, special screenings, workshops, seminars, and celebratory events, the festival always guarantees a comprehensive exploration of Arab cinematic excellence.

Last year, the festival highlighted the talents of Egyptian cinema by screening multiple Egyptian movies, including My Girlfriend starring Ilham Safei Eldein, Mama starring May Elgheity, and 19B starring Sayed Ragab and Nahed El Sebai.

Still from A Nose and Three Eyes

In addition to screening different Egyptian movies, the festival has previously recognised Egyptian talents through prestigious awards. In 2022, Mohamed Mamdouh was honoured with the Best Actor award for his role in Abu Saddam, while the director Hala Galal received the jury prize of 15,000 SEK in the feature documentary competition for her documentary From Cairo.

This year’s lineup promises to captivate audiences with a selection of Egyptian cinematic gems. Among the featured films are Let Us Play Yesterday, directed by Menna Ekram and starring Karima Mansour, Wishes For My Heart, directed by Shireen Magdy Diab and starring Ali Al Tayeb and Walaa Al Sherif; and A Nose and Three Eyes, directed by Amir Ramses and starring Dhaffer L’Abidine, Saba Mubarak, Salma Abu Deif, and Amina Khalil.

Image via MAFF

The MAFF, typically held in April or October, takes place from the 22nd of April to the 28th of April this year, offering audiences the flexibility to attend one or more days; each day featuring different films and documentaries. Following the screening of 2024’s selection, audiences will immerse themselves in the enchanting “Arabian Nights”, featuring a handpicked selection of feature films from the last two editions of the festival, as well as some finger food and live music.

Transitioning to the MAFF Industry Days from April 29th to May 1st, industry professionals, including producers, financiers, filmmakers, and distributors, are given the opportunity to connect with each other and pitch ideas.

Image via MAFF

Then, in October, the MAFF Arab Women Film Days take centre stage, celebrating movies created by and for women, with the purpose of empowering female voices in cinema.

Hopefully, this year, more Egyptian talents will be awarded and recognised in MAFF, a great hub of cultural exchange and cinematic excellence in Europe!