Actress Latifa Fahmy: Passion and ambition



Wed, 27 Sep 2017 - 08:26 GMT


Wed, 27 Sep 2017 - 08:26 GMT

Latifa Fahmy (Photo by Osama Fatim)

Latifa Fahmy (Photo by Osama Fatim)

CAIRO – 27 September 2017: All of a sudden, she is on the screen. An actress no one saw before, that was 2012 in a drama series titled “Dawaran Shoubra” (Shoubra’s Roundabout). Her presence and role as the mother of one of the characters was so felt, believed, and loved by the audience. The questions that everyone asked: where was she? Why she wasn’t acting before? And better yet ‘Who was she?

Latifa Fahmy is a well known figure in the artistic and the cultural platform. Her career in the French cultural center and her activities in improving the Egyptian French cultural relations brought her fame and relations with the artists and the intellectuals of Egypt.

“I always wanted to act,” she told Egypt Today. But life took her from her passion to other activities that she enjoyed and shined in. She was raised in a secular family. Latifa was the daughter of one of the greatest photographers of Egyptian cinema.

Gamal Fahmy was doing the photography for “Adieu Bonaparte” movie. Her role in this movie was helping her daddy in carrying his cameras, helping with the lights basically like a good assistant doing whatever her father the “maestro” wanted and needed. Her assistance in that movie gave her first hand experience in the fascinating world of movie-making as a blooming young woman.

The coincidence was that all the extras were brought to the movie by the French embassy, and she was a perfect Francophone so she was a sort of “on the spot” translator for the whole team working on the movie. “This was an opportunity to see great stars like Michel Piccoli, Patrice Chereau at work performing and interacting with the movie’s team. This strategic opportunity that I was already built from being just my father’s daughter, it took an international depth”, she said. She already knew many stars in the Egyptian cinema through the social circles of her father.

Her participation in this movie caught the eyes of the French cultural attaché Bernard Malauzat, he asked her to work with him in the French embassy as a secretary but she blew the offer off.

Yet after just a few month they asked her to become the accompaniment of the dancing legend Samia Gamal in Toulouse honoring the star for her contribution to the beautiful art of Belly Dancing. “This was an honor to me and another eye opener to the world of the stars”, she recalls.

Returning from France Latifa accepted the offer to work at the French Cultural center as the executive assistant to cultural affairs. In this field she became radiant, she learned everything about organizing a festival, formation stages, preparing theatrical and musical performances, seminars and symposiums, sending artists to France and preparing their itineraries and all the details about successful artistic events.

“This added to my experience in the artistic fields and understanding the know-how of the social, administrative and financial activities accompanying the different events,” stated Latifa proudly.

In the famous event “Les Alumes de Nantes”, in December 1993 where three hundred and fifty artists, writers, lecturers, directors and movie stars were invited to Nantes, France… Latifa became ‘the’ main character on the Franco Egyptian scene. She was the organizer and the spokeswoman of the festival.

During her work and training in Europe Latifa also nurtured her old passion by attending training and courses in acting in Switzerland under the famous director Rene Kelle. She implemented the same idea and organized actors training workshops. She brought directors from France and actors from Egypt and hosted the workshops among the cultural events of the French center. She was present during these workshops and learned from them as well. This translated in a great performance of hers. “We Bahlam ya Masr” (I still dream of Egypt). A strong play on the National Theater, “unfortunately it did not last long but I enjoyed being back on the stage.’

In 2000, the famous director Asmaa el Bakry offered her a small role in her movie “Concerto fi darb saada” or (Concert dans la Ruelle du Bohneur). She performed out of her rediscovered old passion. Her role was the exact opposite of her personality, a woman from a lower class. It was a remarkable role that she portrayed with great talent.

“I made my studies and went to poor suburbs in Cairo and spend time there to see how they live and behave in their daily life.” Then in 2013 she had an appearance of two minutes in the movie “Farsh we Ghata” or Rags and Tatters. The movie was shown in Montpellier Festival. “I received calls from my friends in France asking me to leave everything I am doing and act over this small role”.

True enough, the idea sank in her soul. She resigned from her post in the French cultural center in 2014 and started a new a career as an actor. Her long working years into that job allowed her to retire and she decided to follow her old passion.

Roles started to come; she received the role of a strong classy mother in ‘Fawq mostawa el shobhat’ series (Above Suspicion’s Level). That role made her famous. The series began in Ramadan 2016. Then she won another role in “Al Baron” series in early 2017. Each role was one success after another. The directors saw her in the mother role, yet the roles were novel every time, handled, performed and went directly into the heart of the audience differently.

Now she is a professional actress, loving her new life. There are few roles that leave a strong impression on the audience like the birth of a new star in the Egyptian artistic world.



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