Jordanian filmmaker wins award for best director at Venice film festival

The director said that he spent over a year living with a Bedouin tribe to prepare for the film

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Naji Abu Nowar, a Jordanian filmmaker, won the Orizzonti Award for Best Director at the 71st Venice Film Festival, the Jordan Times reported.

Abu Nowar’s film, entitled “Theeb” is a full-length narrative feature set in 1916 during the Great Arab revolt in the Ottoman Empire, starring Bedouin boy Jacir Eid, who joins his older brother who agrees to accompany a British army officer on a mission to find a well in the desert.

The Orizzonti section is “dedicated to films that represent the latest aesthetic and expressive trends in international cinema”, the festival’s website said.

Abu Nowar told journalists in Venice he spent over a year living with the tribe to prepare for the film, a Jordanian, Britain, UAE and Qatar co-production funded in part by the Abu Dhabi Film Festival and Doha Film Institute, Agence France-Presse reported.

“The bedouin culture has lots of things that make it a ripe subject for a Western. We filmed near the Wadi Rum valley in southern Jordan — a wild terrain, a lawless place in 1916, where people must take morality into their own hands,” Abu Nowar said.

(With AFP)

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