Holocaust-based film ‘to screen at Red Sea Film Fest’

‘Resistance’ will be screened at the Red Sea Film Festival in March. (Supplied)
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Updated 19 February 2020

Holocaust-based film ‘to screen at Red Sea Film Fest’

  • The Jonathan Jakubowicz-directed World War II film will mark the first time a film that explores the Holocaust will screen in the Kingdom
  • ‘Resistance’ tells the story of mime artist Marcel Marceau, who joins the French Resistance at the beginning of World War II in order to help save the lives of 10,000 Jewish orphans

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea Film Festival unveiled its inaugural movie lineup this week, with a few surprises on the list, including Holocaust-based film, “Resistance.”

The Jonathan Jakubowicz-directed World War II film, starring Jesse Eisenberg as Marcel Marceau, who was a member of the French Resistance, will mark the first time a film that explores the Holocaust will screen in the Kingdom.

The significance was not lost on film aficionados, who took to social media to congratulate the Venezuelan director.

“Congratulations @JoJakubowicz I am very proud of all your achievements,” one user wrote. “A geopolitical achievement. Good job, Jonathan!” another user tweeted. 

“I think it’s a promising move toward artistic freedom,” Makkah-based Saudi filmmaker Talal Wassmy told Arab News when asked what the implications of the screening would be.

Meanwhile, Abdullah Yahya, a Saudi film critic for movie-focused website filmphoria.com, added that “it is a great cultural shift toward a less prejudiced mindset. I am glad we are no longer beholden to one narrative when it comes to history.”

The biographical drama tells the story of a young French actor, Marcel Marceau, who joins the French Resistance at the beginning of World War II in order to help save the lives of 10,000 Jewish orphans from Nazi forces in France.

Marceau, who was also famous for being a mime artist that delighted audiences for decades as “Bip,” used his miming skills to keep the orphaned children comfortable and quiet during the risky smuggled escapes to Switzerland.

“The kids loved Marcel and felt safe with him,” the late actor’s cousin and commander of the French Resistance, Georges Loinger, told the Jewish Telegraph Agency in 2007, after Marceau’s death.

“The kids had to appear like they were simply going on vacation to a home near the Swiss border and Marcel really put them at ease.”

The full cast of the film includes Edgar Ramírez, Clémence Poésy, Bella Ramsey, Matthias Schweighöfer, Géza Röhrig, Karl Markovics, Félix Moati, Alicia von Rittberg and Vica Kerekes. 

The film will be screened in Saudi Arabia before it is released in the US on March 27.


Lebanese superstar Fairuz posts video ‘praying for humanity to be saved from coronavirus’

Updated 03 April 2020

Lebanese superstar Fairuz posts video ‘praying for humanity to be saved from coronavirus’

  • The video shows the singer seated in the corner of a room in what is presumed to be her home, reading Psalm 10:1 from the Bible
  • As of Friday, Lebanon’s total number of coronavirus cases stood at 508, with the death toll at 17

LONDON: Lebanese superstar Fairuz released a video on Friday of her praying in her home for humanity to be saved from the coronavirus pandemic.
The video, which was published on her Fairuz Productions YouTube page, shows the singer seated in the corner of a room in what is presumed to be her home, reading Psalm 10:1 from the Bible.
“Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?” she reads.
Lebanon is currently on lockdown with security forces issuing fines for everyone that violates the rules. As of Friday, the country’s total number of coronavirus cases stood at 508, with the death toll at 17.