12 October 2021:
MAD Solutions released the official Arab world poster for the Lebanese film The Sea Ahead, by Ely Dagher, a few weeks before the film’s Arab world premiere at the Feature Narrative Competition of the 5th El Gouna Film Festival (October 14th– 22nd). The poster draws on the feelings of the heroine, played by Manal Issa, highlighting the state of dispersion and anxious limbo that the Lebanese society suffers from.
The Sea Ahead is scheduled to have two screenings at El Gouna Film Festival; Wednesday, October 20th at Festival Plaza at 9:45 PM and Thursday, October 21st at Sea Cinema 1 at 8:30 PM. The film’s second screening will be followed by a Q&A session with the director and a number of the film’s cast.
Previously landing its world premiere at the 74th Cannes Film Festival’s Directors' Fortnight, The Sea Ahead marks the feature debut of Ely Dagher who has won the Palme d’Or award for his short film Waves 98, making him the first Lebanese film to ever receive such an award. The film widley acclaimed by Arab and foreign Critics. Cineuropa described Dagher to be “taking us on a cinematic journey that echoes work by Michelangelo Antonioni and his view of depression.” “With its marvelous scriptwriting, visuals and sounds, Ely Dagher’s work managed to capture us”, added Chafic Tabbara through Al-Akhbar.
The Sea Ahead received numerous awards during its development, including a cash award of € 5,000 to support Best Film in Post-production at the Final Cut In Venice workshop; CineGouna platform’s award for best project in development phase and a financial award from Drosos Foundation. Additionally, it received grants from Doha Film Institute, and AFAC-Arab Funds For Arts and Culture.
After being away for a long time, young Jana returns to Beirut. Suddenly, she finds herself reconnecting with the familiar yet strange life she had once left behind.
Directed and written by Ely Dagher in his feature debut, The Sea Ahead stars Manal Issa,
Yara Abou Haidar, Rabih El Zaher and Roger Azar. The film is co-produced by Andolfi (Arnaud Dommerc), Abbout Productions (Myriam Sassine), Wrong Men and Beaver and Beaver. It is distributed in the Arab world by MAD Solutions.
Beirut- based Ely Dagher graduated with an MA in Contemporary Art Studies and New media from Goldsmiths College in London. His work explores the correlation and possibilities created through the play between cultures, histories and fiction. His latest short film Waves’98 (2015) was awarded the short film Palme D’Or at the 68th Cannes Film Festival.