Tunisian director nominated for two Oscars


Tunisian director Kaouther Ben Hania makes history with two Oscar nominations, according to The National and agencies

The Four Daughters filmmaker gained a second nomination, making her the first Arab female director to hold two Oscar nominations in the same decade.

Ben Hania told The National at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival during the premier of Four Daughters that the docu-fiction hybrid was initially met with uncertainty.

READ: Algerian actress Lyna Khoudri nominated for French ‘Oscar’

She disclosed that after the first nomination, “I had a lot of offers to direct English-speaking films…Not a Marvel movie, but a lot of things.” Therefore, the director’s decision to continue her work on the Tunisian-based documentary was seen as “crazy.”

However, Ben Hania’s decision not only earned her a second Oscar nomination but also the title of being the first Arab in history to be nominated in multiple categories.

The latest work follows the story of a Tunisian mother, Olfa Hamrouni, whose two eldest daughters ran away to join an extremist group in Libya.

The documentary features esteemed Tunisian actress Hend Sabry, who has worked closely with the real Olfa Hamrouni to properly convey the documentary’s events through her performance.

In previous years the Oscars have nominated only a couple of female Arab directors including Palestinian director Farah Al Nabulsi for Best Short Film in 2021, and Lebanese filmmaker Nadine Labaki for Best International Feature Film in 2019.

Between the three Oscar nominated directors, future female Arab filmmakers have some remarkable footsteps to follow.

The National/AFP


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