27 May 2013 11:20 am | | 11


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Abedellatif Kechiche. Image courtesy Top News.

Tunisian-French film director Abdellatif Kechiche won the prestigious Palme d’Or award Sunday at the Cannes Film Festival in France for his long feature “Blue is the Warmest Color.”

The film presents the journey of a 15-year-old girl who falls in love with a female art student.

In the acceptance speech, Kechiche dedicated the award to youth of Tunisia.

”I would like to dedicate the movie and the award to another youth, for an act that happened a while ago, the Tunisian revolution, for their ambition to live free, to express themselves, and to love freely,” Kechiche said.

Steven Spielberg, the head of the jury that bestowed the honor, described the movie as “a great love story” in a press conference posted  on the festival’s official website.

“The fact it is a love story that made us all to feel privileged to be the fly on the wall, to have been invited to see this story of deep love and of deep heartbreak evolve from the beginning in a wonderful way. The director did not put any constraints on the narrative. He let the scenes play the way they play out in real life,” Spielberg said.

”We were absolutely spellbound by the brilliance of the performances, […] and especially the way the director observed his players, and the way he just let the characters breathe. The spaces were as important as what they said and what they were not saying,” he added.

In an interview with radio station Shems FM, Tunisian film director and producer Ridha Elbehi congratulated Kechiche for the award and emphasized the importance of such an honor in recognizing Tunisian cinema, saying that all Tunisians should celebrate this accomplishment.

“This is an opportunity for us to recognize the status that the Tunisian cinema has achieved,” Elbehi said. “It is true that the movie is a French production, but the nationality and the identity of the director is what is often mentioned. [...] Tunisia was mentioned in an international festival and the director dedicated the award to Tunisians.”

Fethi Kharrat, head of the cinema department at the Ministry of Culture, told Radio Kalima that Kechiche’s winning the award is a reason for celebration.

But the content of the movie, focusing on a homosexual relationship, raises questions about how it will be treated in Tunisian society.

When asked about the possibility of censoring the movie when shown in Tunisia, Kharrat answered that it is too early to talk about screening or censoring the film.

“After he won an award for the ‘Secret of the Grain,’ he was invited and honored by the Tunisian Ministry of Culture. It is the least that the Ministry of Culture can do to invite Kechiche and honor him for wining the Palmes D’or. He was in competition with great names, which is a source of pride, ” Kharrat said.

Kechiche began his career as an actor, appearing in Tunisian films by directors Ridha Behi and Nouri Bouzid before becoming a director himself. His previous long-feature films “The Secret of the Grain” and “Black Venus” earned him critical praise.

Ferid Boughedir, another Tunisian director, was also honored at Cannes, where he was inducted into the French Legion of Honor.

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Comments (11)

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  1. ilovesodomites says:

    @arabgovernments.. Don’t knock it til you’ve tried it! ;)

  2. Lua says:

    I’m really sad to see that the world still have people who believe that homosexuals are like that because they choose.
    This is much greater than politics and any religion. People are born the way they are, it’s not a choice.
    Just because a movie has a sex scene, it does not mean it is a porn movie. Tunisians should be proud of any Tunisian being recognized for his work around the globe.
    I really wish to all the narrow-minded people, homosexual children, so that life can teach you how it works.

    • arab governments must apply sharia law to all faggots says:

      to that pagan whore “Lua”:

      i see, so screwing other people in their butt is a choice.

      thank you for enlightening me.

      how about caring for starving children, for the rights of the palestinians or the poor, instead of rights for sodomites?

      • Karim says:

        I know there’s no point in starting a debate with someone whose discourse is so fallible and violent, but for the sake of an open discussion i’m willing to chalk your rhetoric down to a severe lack of education. Point 1) denigrating people is the first sign that you’re trying to lend substance to an empty point and 2) I am not homosexual as you have accused. I have merely relied upon my God given powers of logic and common bloody human empathy.

        You’re jumping all over the place dude. Why bring Palestine into this? Just because one is a proponent for the freedom to love who we wish has zero relevance to their stance on the Palestinian issue–completely mutually exclusive.

        So if you want to make a detailed argument against homosexuality–i don’t know, maybe you’re scared if we accept it, theyll be allowed to adopt, and that takes choice out of the child’s hand, fine, mention that.

        But DONT incite violence against our fellow Tunisian citizens.

        Tawa mechi nkelek ki rajel bi loogetna: ahshem ya weldi, ahsehm. Oomek a3lmetek tkellem inseh hakeka? Mara okhra nawedhelek: ahshem.

        • arab governments must apply sharia law to all faggots says:

          to that fag-supporter “Karim”:
          “I know there’s no point in starting a debate with someone whose discourse is so fallible and violent, but for the sake of an open discussion i’m willing to chalk your rhetoric down to a severe lack of education. Point 1) denigrating people is the first sign that you’re trying to lend substance to an empty point and 2) I am not homosexual as you have accused. I have merely relied upon my God given powers of logic and common bloody human empathy. ”
          i´m not denigrading people – there is no need at all to denigrate people who allready denigraded themselves.
          my point, that you said, i don´t have? well, my point should be clear for all people who are not brainwashed by marxist-liberal garbage at western universities: the point is that people who penetrate each other in their rectum are disgusting perverts. period. no recognition of any kind of legitimicy, no marriage or adoption rights for these sodomites.
          and there can´t be any empathy with the evil. no empathy for murderers, rapists and sodomites – only hate and contempt.
          if someone has homosexual tendencies he should be treaded by a doctor and if commits sodomy the government should execute him.

          • arab governments must apply sharia law to all faggots says:

            another thing to that heartbleeding effeminate homo-sypmathizer “Karim”:

            of course anybody who is not a(sexual)deviant communist, socialist, liberal, marxist, homosexual or any other kind of red whine slurping effeminate useless parasite whose non-existing intelligence didn´t reach the level to become an ingeneer, doctor or true natural scientist or whose talent is not enough tho be a mechanic or craftsman and who because of that settled for becoming a useless sociologist, artist(like most women who leave their natural place – the kitchen and the bed room), philosopher or journalist has to have a lack of education.

            i´m so sorry, dear Karim, that i´m not a pathethic narcissist who hase to use words like “discourse” instead of “speech” to show the whole world how “educated” i am and to stimulate my huge ego, i´m so sorry.

            and you don´t have any logic, if you would have, you would understand that penetrating other people in their rectum is abnormal.

  3. Karim says:

    So much hate…who are you to impose your small minded views on others? Letting people who make life choices that are different than yours live their lives is what makes a society diverse and beautiful. Love is love, and the sooner we stop focusing on negativity and petty prejudices, the better off we’ll all be.

    To be honest, i’m not even surprised that this monumental achievement is bound to be hijacked by self-righteous and antiquated individuals; what a travesty.

    Well done Kechiche.

    • arab governments must apply sharia law to all faggots says:

      to that sodomite “Karim”:

      Screw you subhuman, move your bloody ass full of sperm to europe!

      i am a rigtheous muslim who hates sodomy and sodomites and who generally hates the evil!
      and difference itself does not make a society beautfiul – what a tipacally dumb statement of typically dumb liberal – you are really the most dumb worms on earth.
      screwing other people in their rectum is not “love”, you subhuman dog.and muslims will go on to focus on negativity and so called prejudices you AIDS infested piece of trash.
      and indeed i am selfrighteous and reactionary – to hell with modernity and homosexuality, sin and the evil and scum like you!

  4. mankoos says:

    the director of a semi porn lesbian movie dedicates his prize to revolution youths in Tunisia…talking about someone out of touch!!!

  5. arab governments must apply sharia law to all sodomites says:

    another thing needs to be said or asked:

    what to hell is anyhow islamic about the current tunisian government?

    if this government would be islamic they would hunt down sodomites!

  6. arab governments must apply shari law to all sodomites says:

    of course this degenerate fim maker did a movie about homosexuals – one of the most important requirement to receive a movie prize in these days – as in hollywood for example where everymovie with sodomites receives an oscar.
    but more important is the fact, that this scum is tunisian – so the fact that this tunisian degenerate did receive a prize for making a pro-homosexual movie is a tactic of the french to coopt tunisia and tunisians for tolerance towards homosexuals and to change the opinio of tunisians with regard to homosexuality.
    it is a shame that the tunisian government did invite this subhuman.
    and it tells alot about this “islamic” government…

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