"Though there was a move to modernise the entire [film] industry [in Egypt], the rumours are that many international suppliers have never been paid for the equipment they supplied. So I doubt they'll be supplying any more."
"The vast archives of classic Egyptian film have also been allowed to rot (despite American offers to restore it all for free) and there appears to be little interest in safeguarding it. There is an interview on YouTube with the old Egyptian minister of culture where he opinions that the best thing to do with it is, quote, 'burn it!'. I am not convinced that the 'new' regime will be any better."
"There was a time, a few decades ago, when Egyptian film was viewed on equal terms to Hollywood product, at least in Europe. There were regular entries in Cannes and other European festivals. Those times are now long past and I can see no evidence that governments in the 'Arab' world wish their film industries to regain their former position.
[The future of Arab cinema lies in facing up to real life, not censoring it.]
You may be right (I think you are), but that's not the politicians' view. And they, at the end of the day, control the purse strings."
|The film adaptation of "The Yacoubian Building" lifted the lid on prostitution, extremism and corruption in Egypt Photograph: PR company handout|
"Further to my post above, this is an hour long documentary on the state of the Egyptian film archives, made some years back, but I doubt the situation has improved.
Warning: If you have any feeling for film, parts of this documentary are liable to bring you close to tears." End of quotation from Leuan's posts in response to the aforementioned article on 09/07/12.
Watch the video Saving Egyptian Film Classics by Sayed Badreya:
No Joke No Cairo!
Useful Links to Some Classic Egyptian Films:
- The Iron Gate, Bab elHadeed
- The Will
- Passion and Revenge
- Ghazal alBanat
- Raya wa Sakina
- Siraa fi Elwadi
- The Tough
- The Curlew's Cry
- Bidaya wa Nihaya