The Monaco-based International Emerging Film Talent Association (IEFTA) logo - File.
CAIRO - 20 September 2019: The Monaco-based International Emerging Film Talent Association (IEFTA) returns to Egypt’s Red Sea resort town for the 3rd edition of the El Gouna Film Festival (19-27 September 2019).
El Gouna Film Festival (GFF) is one of the leading festivals in the MENA region and presents a wide variety of films for a passionate and knowledgeable audience, is committed to the discovery of new voices, and strives to be a catalyst for the development of Cinema in the Arab World.
Making its World Premiere at GFF, Marco Orsini’s Beyond TheRaging Sea follows the harrowing tale of two Egyptian adventurers, Omar Samra and Omar Nour (affectionately known as O2), as they take on the world’s toughest row, an unsupported, perilous 3,000 nautical mile journey from the Canary Islands to Antigua. The extreme journey is part of an annual ocean-rowing race called the Atlantic Challenge. They didn’t make it.
Eight days, and 500 miles into their journey across the Atlantic, Team O2 were hit by 45 knot winds and towering waves that caused their boat to capsize - their boat did not self-right as it was meant to do.
The 12 hours that followed, deserted and floating in the rough seas in a small rubber raft (as well as literally in the sea trying to fix the small rubber raft), before they were rescued by a cargo ship which re-routed in answer to their mayday call, became a survival story of epic proportions.
Sponsored by DHL, Team O2 dedicated their row to raising awareness of the global refugee crises. In an ironic twist, Nour and Samra faced the same dangers, terrors and decisions of those they meant to recognize and relieve.
Featuring jaw-dropping, you-are-there footage of a remarkable ordeal and rescue at sea, Beyond the Raging Sea is the gripping account of that experience narrated by those who lived it, capturing what they endured, what they felt and what it meant.
A collaboration by DHL, UNDP, UNHCR and IEFTA, Beyond TheRaging Sea will have its World Premiere on Saturday, 21 September.
Screening as well, will be a presentation of the ongoing collaboration between the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and IEFTA, Refugee Voices in Film. From South Sudan to Central America, from Somalia to Afghanistan, Refugee Voices in Film 4th Edition presents the stories of individual refugees across the globe.
Here refugees speak out about loss and desperation but also resilience and hope. Witness the impact of film in giving a powerful voice to the displaced and dispossessed. This is the first time the program has been presented by IEFTA and UNHCR outside of the Cannes Film Festival where the previous editions have screened.
In addition, the program in El Gouna will also feature a Round table Discussion: Refugee Voices in the Film Industry.
Refugees feature in some of the most compelling works of recent cinema. In this year’s third edition of #GFF’s #CinemaforHumanity initiative, we will hold a round table gathering filmmakers and organizations to talk about innovative and creative approaches when filming humanitarian crises around the globe.
Whereas some filmmakers are moving from observational into participatory filmmaking, this roundtable will look at how to shift the focus to refugees and migrants as audiences of films rather than simply subjects. It will also shed light on how visual storytelling can empower and inform, while expanding the boundaries of humanitarian filmmaking.
With its mission to discover, nurture and empower budding filmmakers from emerging economies, IEFTA, through its Global Film Expression (GFE) initiative, has brought many promising filmmakers to the Cannes Film Festival for more than a decade, providing screenings, networking, mentoring and exposure.
Now, in partnership with the Marché du Film and its Industry Workshops program, IEFTA supports collaborations with filmmakers from across the Horn of Africa, Middle East and Asia. Internationally, there is always an appetite for stories untold, voices unheard and visions as yet unseen, and IEFTA provides opportunity and education to those with little to no access to resources for their cinematic expression.
At this year’s El Gouna Film Festival, IEFTA representatives will again take part in the CineGouna Platform, where they will view films, mentor filmmakers and discover the next filmmakers from Egyptian and Arab cinema to join in the Global Film Expression program at Cannes 2020.
A creative hub for minds and markets, the CineGouna Platform is a filmmakers/industry oriented event created with the objective of nurturing and strengthening promising Egyptian and Arab cinema projects & filmmakers and to help them find artistic and financial support. This past May, two filmmakers who were selected from the CineGouna Platform attended IEFTA’s Cannes program: Ruba Atiyeh from Lebanon and Marwa Zein from Sudan.
IEFTA is a Monaco based non-governmental organization founded with the purpose of discovering and developing film talent from emerging regions, globally. We connect film makers to established industry professionals, engage cultural diversity and foster relationships that are; mentoring, inspiring and educational.