New management at Cairo Film Festival

High-profile Egyptian filmmaker and producer Marianne Khoury has replaced Youssef Cherif Rizkallah as artistic director of the Cairo Film Festival, two months before the 35th edition of the event takes place.

The prestigious event was cancelled last year in the wake of the January 2011 revolution, and since then the running of the film festival – the oldest of its kind in the Middle East and Africa – has been the subject of much change.

Last year Egypt's ministry of culture launched a competition to source a candidate to run the festival. The post was subsequently awarded to the only person who entered: the respected film critic and head of the Egyptian Cinema Association, Rizkallah.

His appointment caused division in the world of Egyptian film, leading to the Cinema Writers and Critics Association - which founded the Cairo Film Festival in 1976 - having the decision overturned. Rizkallah says he will contest the legal validity of the ministry's decision.

The 35th edition of the Cairo Film Festival is scheduled to run from 27 November - 6 December.

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