CAIRO: “Feathers” by Egyptian director Omar Al-Zuhairi has won the Nespresso Grand Prize at the Cannes Film Festival's Critics’ Week.
The 115-minute film was among seven movies in the competition and tells the story of a magic trick that goes wrong at a children’s birthday party, with the authoritative father of the family turning into a chicken.
“Feathers” is an Egyptian-French-Dutch-Greek production and Al-Zuhairi’s first feature-length work.
It stars Demyana Nassar, Samy Bassiouny, Fady Mina Fawzy and Abo Sefen Nabil Wesa.
It was co-written with Ahmed Amer and co-produced by Juliette Lepoutre and Pierre Menahem through Still Moving, in partnership with Lagoonie Film Production, as well as Shahinaz Al-Akkad.
The Cairo International Film Festival congratulated Al-Zuhairi on his win, calling it “a great achievement for Egyptian cinema” as it was the first Egyptian film to win the award.
“Omar Al-Zuhairi is a director with a very special cinematic language and the project began around 2015 with an idea for him,” Amer told Arab News. “He had set the basic structure for the project according to his own style and language, and we worked together to develop the script for two years.
“It was my role as the main writer to develop the story and script, and within the framework of the cinematic language that the director seeks, some details were added to the main story. We wrote 10 scripts before Al-Zuhairi reconciled between the script and his directorial vision.”