Cannes to Fete Egypt as the First Annual Country of Honor

6:43 AM PST 04/28/2011 by Rebecca Leffler

A tribute will be held May 18 with a screening of "18 jours," a collaborative effort of shorts from 10 Egyptian directors.

PARIS -- The Festival de Cannes will be walking like an Egyptian up the Palais red carpet steps this year with the fest set to welcome Egypt as the first annual country of honor among other late entries to the official selection.

Egypt will be the first of a new Cannes tradition to welcome a guest country every year to the fest. A tribute to the country will be held on May 18 featuring a screening of 18 jours, a collaborative effort of short films from 10 Egyptian directors, 20 actors, six writers and a crew based on the January 25 revolution in Egypt.

All profits from the film will be donated to organizing political and public education missions in Egyptian villages.

An official dinner with the Egyptian Cultural Minister and the Egyptian Ambassador to France will follow.

Hussein Kamal's 1968 title Al Bostagui will screen in the Cannes Classics selection and Sameh Abdel Aziz' 2011 film Le Cri d'une fourmi will be added to the Cinema de le Plage lineup.

A concert with Egyptian musicians West El Bala will round out the celebration with a fete that evening. The fest has also added two special screenings to its official lineup announced on April 14, namely Tunisian documentary Plus Jamais Peur by Mourad Ben Cheikh and Josh Tickell's U.S. doc The Big Fix produced by Peter Fonda.

The Festival de Cannes runs May 11 - 22. 

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