MAD Solutions has acquired the rights to Shawkat Amin Korki's film The Exam for distribution in the Arab world. The film, is a joint production between Kurdistan Regional Government, Germany, and Qatar, was screened at around 20 international film festivals last year and received six international awards.
The Exam had a successful journey, over the past year, in international festivals, culminating with winning 6 international awards: FIPRESCI Critics Award for Best Film at Karlovy Vary International Film Festival (KVIFF), UNFPA Award from Cairo International Film Festival, Best Screenplay Award from the Tirana International Film Festival, Best Foreign Language Film at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF), Best Foreign Language Film at Victoria Film Festival, and recently it won the Jury Prize at the Mons International Film Festival in Belgium. Moreover, the film was featured at Red Sea International Film Festival, Göteborg Film Festival, Busan International Film Festival, Arabisches Filmfestival Tübingen, International Film Festival of Kerala, to name but a few.
“I am really thrilled to sign the distribution agreement with MAD Solutions, and we hope this collaboration is the first of many future collaborations,” stated Nur Akkus, CEO of ArtHood Entertainment.
“We are confident that the film will reach the widest audience. At ArtHood, we aim to tell more stories that focus on women and women directors throughout the Middle East, North Africa, and Turkey to grant them international exposure and help raise awareness about the plight of women and the poor means of protecting her rights in such regions.Through our diverse and passionate crew, we ensure their voices are heard and their work is seen at all festivals and theatres, ” he added.
“We are happy to collaborate with ArtHood, which distributed over 50 films that screened in hundreds of festivals, as well as director Shawkat Amin Korki, whose vision enabled him to become one of Iraq's most significant directors,” stated Alaa Karkouti and Maher Diab, co-founders of MAD Solutions. “We really liked ‘The Exam,’ film, and the cause it addresses, and we are delighted to distribute it among the maximum audience in the Arab world; at MAD, we embrace diversity in stories and content to ensure reaching the widest possible audience,” they added.
The film's plot revolves around Rojin, a young Kurdish-Iraqi woman who is set to take the university's entrance exam, while her unhappily married elder sister Shilan decides to assist her to pass at any cost in order to provide her a more emancipated life. Thus, the sisters inevitably become entangled in a huge network of corruption that connects all parts of society.
Directed by Shawkat Amin Korki, who co-wrote it with renowned Iranian scriptwriter Mohammad Reza Gohari, The Exam stars Avan Jamal, Vania Salar, Hussein Hassan, Hoshyar Nerwayi. The film is produced by MîtosFilm, Mehmet Aktas and Masti Films, and is produced with the support of the Ministry of Culture and Youth of Kurdistan Regional Government.
Shawkat Amin Korki is a Kurdish director and screenwriter whose family fled Iraqi military oppression in 1975 and lived in exile in Iran for 25 years. Korki studied Cinema in Iran and gained international recognition in 2006 with the premiere of his debut feature film ‘Crossing The Dust,’ which landed its world premiere at the International Film Festival Rotterdam.
Korki's most widely acclaimed film is Memories on Stone, which was Iraq's official submission for Best Foreign Language Film at the 88th Academy Awards. Furthermore, his films have been screened at world’s renowned film festivals such as Karlovy Vary, Busan, Cairo, Edinburgh, Tallinn, Göteborg, and Hong Kong among others.