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Saudi Film 'Hajjan' Emerges as Top Contender at Critics Awards

The film "Hajjan," helmed by Egyptian director Abu Bakr Shawky and based in Saudi Arabia, has captured significant attention by securing nominations in six categories at the eighth Critics Awards for Arab Films. This recognition firmly establishes "Hajjan" as as a front-runner for the forthcoming event, spotlighting its exceptional narrative and visual accomplishments. Nominated across a spectrum of categories including best feature film, best screenplay, best actor, best music, best cinematography, and best editing, "Hajjan" intricately weaves the tale of Matar, a young protagonist embarking on a desert journey with his faithful camel, Hofira, combining elements of adventure with a deep emotional connection.

Film Clinic, led by Egyptian producer Mohamed Hefzy, and Saudi Arabia's King Abdulaziz Centre for World Culture, also known as Ithra, collaborated to create this cinematic project. The screenplay, a fusion of talents from Egypt's Omar Shama and Saudi Arabia's Mufarrij Almajfel, features compelling performances by Saudi actors Abdulmohsen Al-Nemer and Ibrahim Al-Hsawi. The fact that "Hajjan" received several nominations is a testament to the extraordinary talent and creativity that went into its creation, successfully demonstrating the prowess of Arab film on the global scene.

The Critics Awards for Arab Films, coinciding with the Cannes Film Festival on May 18, serve as a significant event for Arab filmmakers. Organized by the Arab Cinema Center, the awards involve 209 critics from 72 countries, guaranteeing a thorough evaluation. Sudanese filmmaker Mohamed Kordofani's "Goodbye Julia" and Tunisian director Kaouther Ben Hania's "Four Daughters," both nominated in seven categories, are notable contenders. Furthermore, the diverse and competitive roster this year is demonstrated by the six nominations received by Palestinian-British director Farah Nabulsi's "The Teacher" and Jordanian filmmaker Amjad Al-Rasheed's "Inshallah A Boy."

The recognition "Hajjan" receives at the Critics Awards for Arab Films celebrates its excellence and underscores Arab cinema's global influence. The industry is excited to see what effect the Oscar ceremony will have on the careers of people who worked on the nominated films.

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