The People’s Girls (بنات الناس), a short documentary that explores sexual harassment in Egypt through a series of interviews and social experiments, won the ‘Best Documentary Short’ award at the San Francisco Arab Film Festival 2016.
“We feel so grateful receiving the Best Documentary Short award. The international support to tackle this epidemic has been astounding, and the way men and women in Egypt are fighting back serves as an inspiration for audiences globally,” said Colette Ghunim, one of the two directors of the documentary, to Egyptian Streets following the announcement.
The documentary, co-directed directed by Ghunim and Tinne Van Loon, was filmed after an earlier video by the two directors went viral. ‘Creepers on the Bridge’, which captured a first-person view of Ghunim walking down one of Cairo’s busiest bridges, went viral internationally after it revealed how many Egyptian women are often stared at and sexually harassed in haunting ways.
Local and international media attention, including a successful fundraising campaign, encouraged and allowed Ghunim and Van Loon to film The People’s Girls, which is aimed at taking a closer look at who is to blame for sexual harassment as well as how women are fighting back. Sexual harassment, ranging from verbal to physical, impacts the lives of more than 99 percent of Egyptian women according to the United Nations.
While to date the documentary has won several awards at several international film festivals, it is yet to screen in Egypt. However, Egyptians might not have to wait long to finally view the critically-acclaimed documentary.
“We are now in the process of looking at various distribution routes, as well as raising funds to hold free screenings throughout communities in Egypt,” said Ghunim to Egyptian Streets when asked whether the documentary would screen in Egypt.
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