Critics Awards for Arab Films shortlist announced

The Blue Caftan leads nominations

by Amber Wilkinson

The Blue Caftan leads nominees, with stars Saleh Bakri and Lubna Azabal both receiving nods along with director Maryam Touzani
The Blue Caftan leads nominees, with stars Saleh Bakri and Lubna Azabal both receiving nods along with director Maryam Touzani Photo: New Wave
The Arab Cinema Center (ACC) recently revealed the final nominees for the seventh edition of the Critics Awards for Arab Films, which will be highlighting Arab films produced last year. After the first round of voting, The Blue Caftan is the frontrunner with seven nominations.

The films are being assessed by a jury committee of 193 critics from 72 countries and the winners will be announced during a ceremony that will be held during the upcoming edition of the Cannes Film Festival.

This year, the jury added three more categories — Best Editing, Best Cinematography, and Best Music — in addition to its main categories, including Best Feature Film, Best Documentary, Best Director, Best Scriptwriter, Best Actor, and Best Actress.

“The seventh Critics Awards for Arab Films celebrates a wide range of Arab film productions from Tunisia, Morocco, and Lebanon in 2022. These films earned a lot of positive feedback at various global film festivals and events over the past year. With more films and more categories for awards this year, I'd like to extend my gratitude to the jury members for all the hard work they put in,” said Deborah Young — Manager of the Critics Awards for Arab Films.

“We are overjoyed to celebrate the seventh annual Critics Awards for Arab films, which grows in prestige with each new edition and helps spread awareness of Arab cinema around the world, ” added Alaa Karkouti and Maher Diab, do-founders of the ACC.

The final list of the nominees for the Critics Awards for Arab Films was curated according to the following criteria: The films must have premiered at international film festivals outside of the Arab world during last year, at least one of the production companies must be Arab (regardless of the size of its contribution to the production of the film), and the films must be feature-length (fiction or documentary).

The final list of nominees is:

Best Film

  • The Blue Caftan, Maryam Touzani, Morocco
  • Hanging Gardens, Ahmed Yassin Aldaradji, Iraq
  • Alam, Firas Khoury, Palestine

Best Actor

  • Adam Bessa, Harka, Tunisia
  • Saleh Bakri, The Blue Caftan, Palestine
  • Hussain Mohammad Jaleel, Hanging Gardens, Iraq

Best Actress

  • Lubna Azabal, The Blue Caftan, Morocco
  • Clara Couturet, Dirty, Difficult, Dangerous, Ethiopia
  • Fatma Oussaifi, Ashkal, Tunisia

Best Director

Best Screenplay

Best Cinematography

  • Frida Marzouk, Under The Fig Trees, Tunisia
  • Pierre Aïm, Queens, France
  • Virginie Surdej, The Blue Caftan, Poland

Best Editing

  • Julie Léna, Queens, France
  • Valentin Féron, Ashkal
  • Sophie Corra, Thomas Niles, Harka

Best Music

Best Documentary

  • Foragers, Jumana Mann, Palestine
  • Sirens, Rita Baghdadi, Lebanon
  • My Lost Country, Ishtar Yasin Gutierrez, Iraq

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