Joining Roger Shannon for another of Producers Forums “In Conversation with…” series of evenings will be Khaled El Hagar, who will be talking about his recent work, interspersed with film clips. Khaled El Hagar is an internationally renowned director with one foot in the UK film industry and the other in the Arab film world, where he is considered to be one of the most significant, and controversial, of his generation of Egyptian film makers.
Khaled’s films have been shown in more than 150 international film festivals, including Cannes, Montréal , New York ,Berlin, London and Rotterdam. He has won 35 international and national awards for his films and has been called by the English press the Egyptian answer to Pedro Almodovar.’ His last film ‘El Shooq’ (‘Lust’ ) was Egypt’s official Oscars entry for 2012 (Best Foreign Language Film).
Born in Suez, he has lived in Birmingham since the early 1990’s, with regular film directing stints back in Cairo as part of his modus operandi. In recent years he has been filming regularly in Cairo, producing numerous multi-award winning movies, becoming established as an important Director in the Arabic world, and venturing forth into long running television drama series.
The depth and the range of his films resonates powerfully with audiences, embracing multiple cultures and genres, and including comedy, dance, musicals and contemporary dramas.
In addition to making films, Khaled El Hagar has also sought to promote Egyptian cinema internationally. In 2007, he participated as a lecturer in the Berlin Young Talent Campus as the first Egyptian filmmaker to present lectures about Third World Cinema in this event. He was also invited to be a member of the international jury of the Bogotá international film festival in Colombia, in 2007. His Last film ‘El Shooq’ (‘Lust’) was number one in the Egypt box office one week before the revolution, and won Best International Film , The Golden Pyramid , and Best Actress at Cairo International Film Festival.
He is married to Janice Rider, a freelance film/TV costume designer, who has worked on many BBC dramas and independent feature films. Their son, Adam, is an actor and musician, who recently played Ollie, Tom Hardy’s right hand man in the BBC series, ‘Peaky Blinders.’ The Rider Hagar family is a veritable film and television studio in their home in Kings Heath. Khaled El Hagar – familiarly known in the city as ‘the pharaoh of film’ – is a great asset to the film community in the city, and I’m sure we’ll learn much from this conversation about what inspires him, the influences he draws on, and how he manages to live and work creatively across two continents.
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