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Top Prize Winner of 2011: Habibi Wins Four Prizes at Dubai Film Festival

Top Prize Winner of 2011: Habibi Wins Four Prizes at Dubai Film Festival

Now Playing in Palm Springs International Film Festival: Habibi. Here in Palm Springs now, this film follows me from TIFF to PSIF.  Contratulations!

Habibi is the winner of Best Film, FIPRESCI prize, Best Actress, and Best Editor at the Dubai International Film Festival.  Its world premiere was at the Venice Film Festival and its No. American premiere at TIFF 2011; its Asian premiere was at Busan International Film Festival. and its U.S. premiere is on January 5th at the Palm Springs International Film Festival.  Habibi will also screen next month at Goteborg International Film Festival, the most respected film festival in Scandinavia.

Reuters “It took Palestinian director Susan Youssef 10 years to overcome a political obstacle course before she was able to screen her heartwrenching tale of doomed romance in Gaza at the Dubai International Film Festival.”

See the trailer here.

There’s a mention of Habibi in the New York Times, regarding their screening in Reykjavik.

The Habibi team is also planning an education tour for spring 2012. They would love universities to invite Habibi to schools and are asking them to please write to the director herself, Susan Youssef  [info AT] if you would like to organize a screening.

Habibi (My Beloved) retells in a modern Middle East setting the ancient Arabian story of “Layla and the Madman,” a tragic romance similar to that of Romeo and Juliet.  The film tells the tale of two students in the relatively liberal West Bank who are forced to return to their homes in Gaza, stronghold of conservative Islamist group Hamas. There they try to continue their love affair in defiance of tradition in a modern Middle East. Habibi is in the Top Five Films of 2011 in Sight & Sound.

Screen Daily review by Len Klady says, “Habibi unquestionably reflects a nascent talent ready for bigger challenges.” 

See the Variety TV Interview.

Paradigm is repping the film In the U.S. and eOne is the international sales agent.

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