The decision to name a bridge in the Egyptian capital after star Adel Emam, also famed as “The Leader”, was widely celebrated in the artistic circles.
Emam’s name went viral on Egypt’s social media platforms, including X, after the official page of Cairo Governorate on Facebook announced the decision. According to the announcement, the governorate’s executive council presided by the governor, approved to “name some schools and public projects after Egyptian martyrs and symbols, among them is Adel Emam, whose name will be given to the bridge near the Salah Salem intersection, eastern Cairo.”
Egyptian artists described the decision as a merited tribute to Emam, who has piled great works since his debut in the 1960s, and represented Egypt in myriads international platforms. Actress Majida Zaki said “Emam’s name is like a medal. He’s the model actor who supported and inspired a whole generation of artists.”
“My first work was with him in a series named ‘Dreams of the Flying Boy’, and people knew me in this production. Everyone loves and respects the family of Adel Emam. They are known with their compassion. Emam is the mentor and compass not only for his family, but also for the entire artistic community,” she told “Asharq Al-Awsat”.
Actress Lebleba, who partnered with Emam in many works, said that “naming a public project after him is an honor and a source of pride and happiness for all artists,” adding that “he is incomparable. He captivated his audience with a diverse range of artistic creations that continue to resonate in the hearts and minds of his fans. Emam's enduring legacy as a remarkably distinctive artist has elevated him to the status of an icon. His commitment to creativity and years devoted to the world of art have solidified his unique place in the realm of artistic brilliance, she added.
For her part, Actress Sherine described “the decision as a thoughtful gesture" adding that “honoring the name of the leader is an appreciation of art and its value. Naming cinemas and theaters after artistic symbols is an esteemed tradition that the Egyptian state is accustomed to.”
Artist Salah Abdullah said he was delighted with the decision, “a great surprise that the leader deserves.” “Paying tribute to our mentor is an honor to the entire artistic movement and an appreciation of symbols who gave a lot to the Egyptian art,” he told “Asharq Al-Awsat”.
Actress Elham Shahein applauded the tribute and described it as “a triumph for all artists.”
Hani Ramzi also commented on the decision, highlighting that it’s an appreciation of the art’s role and message. “Paying tribute to the legend Adel Emam is a tribute to every Egyptian artist and to the role of soft power,” he wrote on Facebook. Artist Khaled Sarhan also hailed the decision and addressed the leader on Facebook, saying: “Your name is a landmark in itself, master.”
Egypt's Acting Professions Syndicate and the Emam family also applauded the decision, while his brother producer Issam Emam described it as “an honor for his name and family.”
Before “the leader”, the names of many stars in Egypt were given to public facilities, including Samir Ghanem, Mahmoud Abdelaziz and Mahmoud Yassine.
Back in August, the National Festival of Egyptian Theater celebrated Adel Emam by naming its 16th edition after him as a tribute to his 60-year-old journey.