Japanese director Naomi Kawase will lead the International Competition’s jury of the 44th Cairo International Film Festival (CIFF), which will run from 13 to 22 November this year.
Festival President Hussein Fahmy welcomed the participation of Kawase, confirming her role to lead the international competition’s jury as a valued addition to the activities of the coming edition. Fahmy added that Kawase has a distinguished career and possesses great experience that qualified her to obtain prestigious awards from various international festivals.
Furthermore, Festival Director Amir Ramses asserted that the presence of a cinematic talent as Naomi Kawase as head of the international competition jury is a continuation of the successful tradition established by the CIFF over the years to invite the world’s leading filmmakers to this position.
Ramses added that the presence of an award-winning female director with such a successful career and rich filmography is a great inspiration to female filmmakers in Egypt.
The prominent Japanese director and writer gained worldwide fame after achieving many honourable successes during her career that began in the late 1980s.
Born and raised in Nara, Japan, Kawase continues to make her films there today. Her pursuit to capture reality through film beyond simplistic documentary-fiction dichotomies has received worldwide acclaim.
She is considered the youngest person to win the Caméra d’Or for best debut feature film at the Cannes Film Festival for Moe no Suzaku (1997). She also won three awards from the prestigious French festival for her films Mogari no Mori (2007) and Hikari (2017). She also received the Carrosse d’Or from the Directors’ Fortnight (2009).
In 2000, her film Hotaru won both the FIPRESCI award and was nominated for the Golden Lion at the Locarno Film Festival. Meanwhile, her 2006 film, Tarachime, received a special mention at the same festival.
She is also a director of commercials, radio programme DJ, essayist, and pursuer of various expressive activities, including calligraphy and installations.
Moreover, as executive director of the Nara International Film Festival — which she launched in 2010 — she focuses on nurturing the next generation of visionaries and has produced nine films in this pursuit.