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Saudi Female Director to Feature at Venice Film Festival

Saudi Female Director to Feature at Venice Film Festival

Monday, 26 August, 2019 - 08:00
Saudi Arabian director Haifaa Al-Mansour. (AP)
Asharq Al-Awsat

Saudi Arabia’s Haifaa Al-Mansour will be one of two female directors to field films in competition at the upcoming Venice Film Festival.

Al-Mansour is the Kingdom's first female director, whose first feature "Wadjda" played at Venice in 2012.

Her latest movie, "The Perfect Candidate", tells the story of a young Saudi female doctor who decides to run for office.

"Venice has been really an important launch for my career. This time I'm in the competition so hopefully this marks a new stage in my life as I grow as a director," she said, according to The Associated Press.

"I'm very grateful for the opportunity to bring my voice to the world with such an amazing platform for filmmakers. But (it's) still very nerve-wracking. It's a big screen and it's a big festival."

She said she would like to see more women in competition.

The other female director at the annual festival is Shannon Murphy with her directorial debut, “Babyteeth.”

Venice is the unofficial start of the fall film festival season, with the Toronto International Film Festival and Telluride and New York festivals following shortly after. It helps define the films in awards discussion until the Oscars in February.

The Venice Film Festival kicks off on Wednesday and runs through September 7.

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