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Poster for A Civilized People

A Civilized People

Director: Randa Chahal Sabbag Run Time: 109 min. Format: DCP Rating: NR Release Year: 1999 Language: Arabic and French with English subtitles

Starring: Jalila Baccar, Nada Ghosn, Renee Dick, Hassan Farhat, Myrna Maakaron, Carmen Lebbos, Sotigui Kouyaté

The Future of Film is Female and The Arab Film and Media Institute (AFMI) present a special screening of Randa Chahal Sabbag’s A Civilized People as part of their Arab Women in the Arts program. Also screening is The FOFIF supported short film Dress Up, directed by Karina Dandashi. To make an additional $10 donation to The Future of Film is Female, select the “Event + Donation” ticket on the checkout screen.

During the civil war, some Lebanese have fled to Europe, leaving their large apartments, luxurious houses, and their servants: Sri Lankans, Filipinos, Egyptians “imported” to serve by the thousands. These and many more must deal with the maverick who controls the building, its occupants, the neighbourhood, and a few areas of the city. Their lives intersect: the young Muslim militia fighter and the Christian maid, the middle-class woman who has returned in search of her lover, the Beirut cats and their “treacherous life”…

DRESS UP (2021, 12 minutes)
Directed by Karina Dandashi
Karina’s home to attend her younger sister’s marriage festivities. She brought along her “college roommate” Denise. They’re queer and not out; how will Karina handle all the pent-up tension she feels?

Arab Women in the Arts is an annual showcase to honor generations of Arab women who have excelled in and revolutionized all forms of artistic expression. The 2022 program includes short and feature films, poetry readings, musical performances alongside a virtual gallery featuring paintings, photographs, fiber art and illustrations. The program will also include talkbacks and discussions with the artists about their work and their personal stories of empowerment. This showcase will run from May 26-30th, with a highlight on the work of the late Lebanese filmmaker Randal Chahal Sabbag.

The Arab Film and Media Institute (AFMI) is the first organization of its kind outside the Arab world, a unique ecosystem to find, nurture and develop Arab film and media projects.