Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Egypt: Media Coverage on Showing of Film on Baha'i Rights

The Egyptian newspaper el-Badeel, in its 28 August 2007 edition, published an article about the recent documentary film made by the independent film maker Mr. Ahmed Ezzat. The article is authored by Khaled Abdel-Rasoul and Sarah El-Masry and is entitled "First Film on the Baha'i Quagmire in Egypt."

The film, titled "My Belief or My Country [Identity Crisis]," was shown at Egypt's Cinematic Cultural Centre upon the invitation of the Egyptian Film Critics Association on 26 August. Previously, this film was invited for showing at the last Alexandria Film Festival, but was banned by Egypt's security and censorship agencies. The documentary is 34 minutes long, and required approximately 35 hours of filming and 300 hours of montage.

The film's director, Ahmed Ezzat, stated that "the principal reason for him to handle the Baha'i case was for the cause of justice and not religion, because human rights cannot be partial, but should be applicable to all." He also added that "the film was produced entirely at his own expense." It is of note that Ahmed Ezzat is an Egyptian Muslim.

Following the film's showing, a heated discussion ensued at the exhibition hall, which was crowded with human rights activists, film makers and critics, thinkers, members of the Baha'i community and the general public. The discussion focused on the issues raised by the film as well as those facing Egypt, such as citizenship, freedom of belief, religious classification on ID cards, and freedom related litigation cases in general.

The film's promotional piece is posted below. The film, in its entirety, will soon be available for viewing. When such time arrives, an announcement will be made on this site.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I can't wait to view the whole film!

r.a. said...

The showing of this film is one of the rare opportunities where the true face of human rights in Egypt is presented. It would be an understatement to say that it took much courage and determination to produce such a documentary. Credit is given to Mr.Ahmed Ezzat, and authors Khaled Abdel-Rasoul and Sarah El-Masry. Such exposure, often banned, is one of the rare opportunities to effectively present and address the crisis facing what was once a secular and free society. The more the coverage of these issues are spread to the Egyptian public, the less momentum given to the forces that would see the obstinate continuance of its degeneration. This needs added and continued efforts however, as the ruling authorities do not care what society believes.

Bilo said...

Anonymous,
The film is worth the wait....

r.a.,
Thank you for your thoughts.

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