At the cinéma les 3 Luxembourg - 67 rue monsieur le prince 75006 paris
About the Festival

The sixth edition of Middle East: What Cinema Can Do is set to unfold in the usual venue in Paris continuing the biennial's intent to inform, create awareness and stimulate dialogue, with a ten-day programme of shorts, mid-length and feature fiction and documentary films from Egypt, Iraq, Iran,  Israel, Lebanon, Libya, Palestine and Syria. But first a little background concerning the event.

Israelis-Palestinians: What Can Cinema Do?
was the name of the first two editions of this biennale festival. The first was held from 26 March to 1 April 2003, quickly making its mark as an event not to miss, an event that can be qualified as the only biennale festival in Europe bringing these "enemies" together on the same programme.

Founder Janine Halbreich-Euvrard has been a film critic since 1974. That same year she organized - in Royan, France - the first third-world film festival ever held in Europe, already focusing on the Middle East, and of course, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. She made a visit to the region in 2004, venturing to meet the filmmakers on their own territory.

By February of 2005, she had published a book bearing the same name, in which she recounts her journey interspersed with a series of interviews with some of the most prominent filmmakers in the region, including Sobhi Al-Zobaidi, Simone Bitton, Tawfiq Abut Wael, Mai Masri, Ram Loevy, Avi Mograbi, Georges Khleifi…The second edition of the biennale festival took place from 1 to 7 June 2005.

In the continuity of this strong beginning, the third edition took place from 21 to 27 November 2007. We recognised the need to widen our approach, for the whole area is implicated in this tragic and endless conflict and that is why the name of the event is now Middle East: What Can Cinema Do?.

Another new element for the 2007 edition was the debate+film daily screening, exploring crucial themes such as the Israeli settlement of Palestinian land, the tragedy of Gaza, that of Lebanon, the war in Iraq and the place of Women in Middle Eastern society.

For 2009, marking the festival's fourth edition, many of the themes were revisited in new works by Middle Eastern filmmakers as the region showed no sign of improving. A new focus was added, that of Iran and the growing unrest among the young people.

Furthermore, Middle East: What Can Cinema Do? was no longer a film week, but rather ran over 12 days. 

In 2011. The name changed again: Middle East: What Cinema Can Do, in the affirmative form! And it lasted for two weeks.  In view of the latest Arab Spring developments, it was necessary to add this new theme, marking the inclusion of Egypt for the first time.

Held at the cinema Les 3 Luxembourg, art house cinema owners Gérard and Anne Vaugeois have played an essential role in hosting the festival. Their dedication to bringing thought-provoking films and filmmakers to meet movie audiences on a regular basis has guaranteed that the event and the venue have been in perfect symbiosis. 


recent articles
Item posted : 22.02.2014
Revue de Presse/ Press Clippings
Television, radio, newspapers and magazines, websites, the 6th edition of Middle East: What Cinema Can Do was held from 29 November to the 8 December 2013. (in French)

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Item posted : 13.10.2013
At the Center of Current Events
Since our last biennale in December 2011, the Middle East has barely gone a day without making the headlines. The wave of revolutions that swelled then is still rumbling in the lower depths, but its enemies have also rallied: more than 100,000 have died so far in the civil war in Syria alone.
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Item posted : 08.10.2013
At First Glimpse
The 6th edition of the biennial film event Middle East: What Cinema Can Do will unfold from the 29 November to 8 December at the usual venue, Les 3 Luxembourg. The catalogue is at the printers, invitations sent, final preparations in the works, and it is with great anticipation that we would like to share the highlights of the upcoming event.
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Item posted : 08.10.2013
The Photographer Behind the Photo
For the sixth edition, Middle East: What Cinema Can Do, chose to cover the catalogue and site with a photo taken by a photographer from Gaza.

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Item posted : 13.10.2013
The Debates
Once again, the festival has invited well-known personalities to participate in the debates, such as Michel Warschawski, Bernard Hourcade, Samir Aita, Elias Sanbar and more.
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Item posted : 19.10.2013
Looking for Volunteers
Interested in the Middle East, bilingual, cinema buff, photography buff, looking for an activity, for whatever reason, volunteer your services to enhance the next edition of our event.

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Item posted : 13.10.2013
Festival Committee, Sponsors and Supporters
Meet the people and organizations behind the event.
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