Mon Sep 18, 2023



Cairo, September 18, 2023 - El Gouna Film Festival, is thrilled to announce the appointment of Jasmila Zbanic as the President of the Feature Narrative Competition of the forthcoming 6th edition of El Gouna Film Festival (October 27 to November 2, 2023). This acclaimed filmmaker, born in Sarajevo in 1974, brings a wealth of experience, talent, and a remarkable career, making her the ideal choice to lead the competition jury.

Jasmila Zbanic is a graduate of Sarajevo's Academy of Dramatic Arts, where she honed her skills as a director and screenwriter. Her journey in the world of cinema has been nothing short of remarkable, marked by numerous awards, accolades, and international recognition.

One of her most notable achievements is her feature debut, GRBAVICA, which earned her the prestigious Golden Bear at the 2006 Berlinale, along with the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury and the Peace Prize. The film was also nominated for Best Film and Best Actress at the European Film Awards, solidifying Zbanic's status as a rising star in the industry.

Zbanic continued to impress with her second feature, ON THE PATH, which premiered at the 2010 Berlinale and garnered awards such as the Filmkunst Festival Schwerin Award for Best Director and the Golden Apricot IFF Yerevan FIPRESCI Prize. Her third feature, FOR THOSE WHO CAN TELL NO TALES, made its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and received the 2013 Femme de Cinema Award at Les Arcs European Film Festival.

In recent years, Jasmila Zbanic's talent has shone brightly on the international stage with her critically acclaimed film QUO VADIS, AIDA? The movie premiered at the Venice Film Festival and achieved remarkable success, including winning El Gouna Gold Star for Best Film in the Feature Narrative Competition at the 2020 GFF, the European Film Award for Best Movie, Best Director, and Best Actress. It also received nominations for the Academy Awards (Oscars) in the Best International Feature Film category and two BAFTA Awards.

Throughout her career, Jasmila Zbanic has exhibited her creativity in various forms, including documentaries and short films, all of which have received recognition and accolades at prestigious festivals around the world.

Zbanic's remarkable journey has been marked by her unwavering commitment to the art  of filmmaking, and her dedication to highlighting essential human stories on the global stage. Her films have resonated with audiences and critics alike, earning her numerous awards and a reputation as a visionary filmmaker.

In addition to her film work, Zbanic has made her mark in the world of art exhibitions, showcasing her creative vision at renowned events such as Manifesta 3, the Istanbul Biennial, Kunsthalle Fridericianum Kassel, and New Museum in New York.

Intishal Al Timimi, Festival Director GFF, said, “Her outstanding contributions to the world of cinema and her unwavering commitment to storytelling make her an exemplary choice to lead this competition. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Jasmila for accepting the invitation to join the Jury. Her expertise and passion will undoubtedly enrich the festival's mission to celebrate the art of filmmaking”

About the El Gouna Film Festival

One of the leading festivals in the MENA region, GFF aims to showcase a wide variety of films for a passionate and knowledgeable audience, while fostering better communication between cultures through the art of filmmaking. Its goal is to connect filmmakers from the region with their international counterparts in the spirit of cooperation and cultural exchange. El Gouna Film Festival has gained a reputation for showcasing a diverse lineup of films from around the  world, including a strong emphasis on Arab cinema. The festival aims to promote and support the industry's growth in the region and provide a platform for filmmakers to showcase their work. The festival is also committed to the discovery of new voices and strives to be a catalyst for the development of cinema in the Arab world, especially through CineGouna Platform, an industry-oriented event created to empower Egyptian and Arab filmmakers and help them find artistic and financial support. CineGouna Platform presents the CineGouna SpringBoard and the CineGouna Bridge programs that provide opportunities for sharing and learning.

Share this article:


Connect with us