When young Egyptian writer Mohamed Diab was writing his first film “678”, which shows an unseen angle of sexual harassment in the Egyptian community, he had no idea that this film—along with his other masterpieces—“Clash” and “Al-Jazirah”, would eventually lead him to the Oscars’ 2018 jury committee.
Diab announced on his personal Facebook page that he was chosen as a permanent member of the writers committee at the Oscars. His membership will allow him to vote on participating films at the prestigious film festival starting next year.
Diab’s two films were intentionally acclaimed for tackling social issues from different creative angles. In “678”, Diab presents three women from different social statuses, each facing sexual harassment in different circumstances. With their differing status, each decide to fight it back in a different their own way.
Meanwhile, “Eshtebak”, introduced for the first time at the opening of the Un Certain Regard category at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival achieved a long—and still going—chain of international awards at several famous film festivals.
The film was received numerous awards for best actor and actress, best camera work, and best script. “Clash” reflects Egyptian society from a political angle, set right after the 2013 Rabaa’ sit-in. The movie showcases Muslim Brotherhood members to current regime supporters, the movie presents an unbiased, honest image of Egyptian society from all sides.
Eshtebak tells the story of a group of people who belong to different social classes and share different ideologies, who find themselves together inside a police van after being arrested during the 30 June uprising protests that flooded the Egyptian streets.
The plot features clashes between the diverse group, made up of everyone from Muslim Brotherhood supporters to Brotherhood opponents, all while stuck in a small vehicle on one of the hottest days of the summer.
The arrested group consists of Adam, played by Hany Adel, a journalist who was covering the protest for his news agency, and Nagwa, played by Nelly Karim, a nurse who refused to let her husband and child be arrested without her.
Diab is not the only Egyptian to make it to the jury. Egyptian-American actor Ramy Malek was also chosen as one of the 774 newly appointed members of the Oscars Actors Jury Committee.
The Emmy Award winning actor is famously known for his role on the American TV show “Mr. Robot”.
Malek was born in the US to Egyptian parents and graduated from the LA Arts School in 2009. Soon after graduating, he started his career as an actor. He played several roles before being cast in “Mr. Robot”, including the character of an Egyptian Pharaoh in the movie “Night at the Museum”.
Egypt comes as one of 57 countries where members of the committee had been chosen, according to the Oscars statement.