The Ismailia Film Festival for Documentaries and Shorts held on Monday a seminar to honour renowned film critic Ali Abu Shadi as part of its 20th edition.
The festival’s director and film critic, Issam Zakaria, said that Abu Shadi played a great role in establishing and supporting the Ismailia Film Festival.
Abu Shadi died in February, after it was announced that he would be nontenured.
Zakaria added, “Abu Shadi was a magnificent film critic and statesman who managed to balance between the two sides.”
Film critic Osama Abdul Fatah asserted that the tribute to Ali Abu Shadi “aims at honouring him as a public figure, film critic, and statesman, and also honouring his entire generation that was born after the second world war and was raised in the 1960s.”
Abdul Fatah added, “we can take Ali Abu Shadi as a model for the Nasserist model,” as he was a fan of the late president Gamal Abdel Nasser and was shocked when the 1967 war broke out.
Abu Shadi was born in 1946 and received a bachelor’s degree in literature from Ain Shams University in 1966. He also received a master’s degree from the Higher Institute of Art Criticism in 1975.
He had been a member of the Egyptian Film Critics Association since 1972 and headed the governmental authority for censorship between 1996 and 1999, and again from 2004 to 2009. He was a strong representative of Egypt and Arab critics in the International Federation of Film Critics.
Before his death, the respected critic was already set to be honoured for his achievements at the Ismailia International Film Festival in its coming edition. His bibliography includes more than 20 books in different fields, including criticism and theory. Among his books are Black and White, The Language of Cinema, 100 Years of Egyptian Cinema, Cinema and Politics, Documentary Cinema in the 1970s, and Classics of Egyptian Cinema. He also held important posts, including secretary general of the Supreme Council of Culture in 2007.