The Knight and the princess poster
CAIRO – 17 September 2019: Egyptian star Mohamed Henedy posted on his official Instagram account a video from behind the scenes of the animation movie ''The Knight & The Princess".
"From behind the scenes of 'The Knight & The Princess'; wait for the movie," Henedy captioned his video.
''The Knight & The Princess’’ is the first Egyptian animated feature film that will participate in the third edition of El Gouna International Film Festival that is scheduled to take place from September 19 to 27, 2019.
"The Knight & The Princess" will have its world premiere at the third edition of GFF, before its public release in October.
Inspired by a real seventh century Arab warrior, the plot follows young adventurer Mohammed Bin Alkassim. At the young age of 15, he believed that anything was possible, and he took it upon himself to save women and children abducted by pirates in the Indian Ocean.
As he turned 17, Mohammed Bin Al-Kassim was ready to take on the tyrant king Daher. He left his Iraqi hometown Basra with his lifelong friend Zaid, and his mentor Abu Al-Aswad on a challenging adventure to free Sind.
The film delves into the exciting experiences that helped shape the great leader he would later become.
Written and directed by Bashir el-Deek, the film features voices from a fine cast that includes Mohamed Henedy, Donia Samir Ghanem, Medhat Saleh, Maged El Kedwany, Lekaa Elkhamissi; along with acting legends like Abla Kamel, Abdel Rahman Abou Zahra, the late Amina Rizk and the late Saeed Saleh. The characters were created by the late Mustafa Hussein.
“We are proud to showcase the first Egyptian animated feature film created by an Arab crew, whose work is on par with prominent animated films from around the world.
The film not only represents a significant milestone for the Arab film industry, but also helps it take crucial steps towards expanding its horizons in a genre that embodies creativity, imagination and talent in a brand new light in the region,” commented Intishal al-Timimi, director of El Gouna Film Festival on the festival's official website.
“We are happy to screen 'The Knight & The Princess' at the third edition of GFF. It will surely add value to our line-up, as it not only pioneers in tackling a genre that has been difficult to produce in the Egyptian and Arab film industry, but also marks the comeback of writer and director Bashir el-Deek, one of the most celebrated filmmakers of the Egyptian neo-realism,” stated Amir Ramses, artistic director of the Festival.
“Making this film was a huge challenge. We started this project 20 years ago and faced production hurdles all along the way. Yet, we did not allow them to diminish our enthusiasm. We continued to work on the film and made it our mission to prove that we have what it takes to create an Arab animated film without depending on foreign expertise,” said Abbas Bin el-Abbas, film producer.
“We are delighted to premiere our film at GFF, which we consider as one of the prominent rising film festivals in the region. And we hope that this step will facilitate the distribution process of the film later on, since we may encounter the same obstacles that other independent films face in general,” he added.
El Gouna Film Platform is an industry-oriented event aimed at supporting and empowering Arab filmmakers, providing them with technical and financial support.
The platform provides two different programs for filmmakers wishing to participate and learn: El Gouna Cinema Bridge and El Gouna Runway.
El Gouna Runway is a laboratory for the development of film projects and for joint-productions. It aims to empower Arab filmmakers, including producers and directors working on film projects in the development stage, or post-production films, by providing creative and financial support.
It is worth mentioning that the organizers of El Gouna Film Festival's third edition revealed granting Mohamed Henedy the Creative Achievement Award for his significant contribution to cinema.
The festival’s third edition is scheduled to run from September 19 -27. The festival's management decided granting Palestinian director Mai Masry the same award.
Masry is one of the most prominent Palestinian directors. She is known for her documentaries, which focus on women and children.
Through its various competitions and workshops El Gouna Film Festival continues to build on a number of collaborations it has initiated to empower Arab filmmakers, especially outside the Arab world, and promote projects and films at various stages to enhance co-production and distribution opportunities.
El Gouna Film Festival or GFF is an annual film festival established in 2017, hosted in the Red Sea resort town of El Gouna, Egypt. The inaugural festival started September 22, 2017.