For the first time in history, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences is nominating more than 70 women for its award in a myriad of categories. In this historic moment for female filmmakers, two Arab women are making history at the Oscars, which will be held on April 25.
Tunisian director Kaouther Ben Hania’s “The Man Who Sold His Skin” is competing in the “Best International Feature Film” category. The film traverses the life of a Syrian refugee in Lebanon, who sells a renowned tattoo artist the skin on his back as a canvas, and soon, collectors from all over become highly interested in such a questionable piece of art. The Tunisian film already landed the lead actor, Yahya Mahayni, the Orizzonti Award for ‘Best Actor’ at the Venice Film Festival.
The Tunisian feature is up against stiff competition from Jasmila Zbanic’s wartime drama “Quo Vadis, Aida?,” “Romania,” from Alexander Nanau, “Another Round,” directed by Danish filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg, and Kwok Cheung Tsang’s “Better Days.”
At the same time, Palestinian filmmaker Farah Nabulsi is competing in the “Best Live Action Short Film” category with her movie “The Present.” A heartwarming story of a man named Yusef, who sets out on a journey with his daughter across the West Bank, to buy his wife a gift.
The short film is in for the win, competing against Doug Roland’s “Feeling Through,” “The Letter Room,” a short drama film directed by Elvira Lind, Travon Free’s “Two Distant Strangers,” and “White Eye” by Tomer Shushan.
We are so proud of these two Arab women making history at the Oscars, and we wish them both the best of luck!