Mohamed Farag in a scene from VOY! VOY! VOY
VOY! VOY! VOY! wins Egyptian Film Critics Association’s Best Egyptian Film of 2023 Award
Following its smashing success at the Rotterdam and Oostland film festivals
After earning a “most loved and visited film” title during its European premiere at the International Film Festival Rotterdam, and in conjunction with the film’s well-received screening at the Oostland Film Festival in Belgium, Omar Hilal’s VOY! VOY! VOY! has been awarded the Best Egyptian Film of 2023 by the Egyptian Film Critics Association (EFCA).
VOY! VOY! VOY! won over a jury of critics spearheaded by Khaled Mahmoud with a score of 10 out of 19 votes.The annual Critics’ Awards is an established tradition of the EFCA that it has been holding regularly since its founding in 1972 under the supervision of the FIPRESCI to highlight the best in local and international cinema and contribute to enriching cinematic culture among film critics, practitioners, and its broad audience.
As for its participation at the IFFR, VOY! VOY! VOY! held two full-house screenings at the 53rd Rotterdam International Film Festival as part of its Limelight Program, which is known for showcasing avant-premieres of cinematic highlights from around the world. The film also held a third screening on the festival’s last day due to great public demand, with the festival highlighting it as Best of its edition on its official website.
Previously, the film was selected to be Egypt’s official submission to the 96th Academy Awards after its widely successful theatrical release across the Arab World.
VOY! VOY! VOY! tells the story of Hassan, a security guard living an impoverished life with his mother who dreams of traveling and living abroad. One day he stumbles on the sport of blind football and cunningly decides to pose as a visually impaired man to join a team close to playing a World Cup tournament in Europe.
On this journey, he crosses paths with several characters, an attractive young journalist who starts to take an interest in the team as he takes an interest in her, a middle-aged coach looking for an opportunity, and his two best friends. With them in tow, Hassan goes to unimaginable lengths to not miss out on Europe, hoping that this will provide a ticket to the team to a life with more opportunity.
VOY! VOY! VOY! is produced by Mohamed Hefzy and written and directed by Omar Hilal, marking his cinematic debut and transition from the world of advertisements to movies.
The film also features an ensemble cast of established and emerging movie stars, including Mohammed Farrag, Bayoumi Fouad, Taha Desouki, Amgad El-Haggar, Hanan Youssef, Mohamed Abdel-Azim, and Hagag Abdel-Azim, alongside headliner Nelly Karim, with a special appearance by Passant Shawky.