The 2022 Arab Film Festival has finally concluded, and what a ride it has been! This is our second year back in-person in San Francisco, and we’re so grateful to each and every one of the fantastic filmmakers, partners, sponsors and fans who made our 26th year so special. 

We pride ourselves on finding, nurturing and showcasing the very best Arab cinema has to offer. For the first time since 2016, we’ve assembled a jury of remarkable filmmakers, writers, actors and critics to select the winners for the following Arab Film Festival awards: Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best Debut Feature, Best Narrative Short, Best Documentary Short and the new Ruya Visionary Award which is presented to a film that is innovative and boundary pushing in its storytelling and/or production. We are also ecstatic to present our Audience Award, voted on by festival attendees.

The 2022 Arab Film Festival Award winners are as follows:

Arab Film Festival Award Winners 2022 The Blue Caftan - Best Narrative Feature

Best Narrative Feature: The Blue Caftan
Directed by Maryam Touzani, Morocco

Honorable Mention:
Memory Box dir. Joana Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige, Lebanon

Arab Film Festival Award Winners 2022 The Desert Rocker - Best Documentary Feature

Best Documentary Feature: The Desert Rocker
Directed by Sara Nacer, Algeria/Canada/France/Morocco

Honorable Mention:
Little Palestine, Diary of a Siege dir. Abdallah Al-Khatib, Lebanon/France/Qatar

Arab Film Festival Award Winners 2022 The Window - Best Narrative Short

Best Narrative Short: The Window
Directed by Sarah Kaskas, Lebanon

Honorable Mentions:
Warsha dir. Dania Bdeir, Lebanon
Nour Shams dir. Faiza Ambah, Saudi Arabia

Faraway - Best Documentary Short

Best Documentary Short: Faraway
Directed by Aziz Zoromba, Canada

Honorable Mention:
The Perfect Picture dir. Hala El Kouch, Lebanon

The Stranger - Best Debut Feature

Best Debut Feature: The Stranger
Directed by Ameer Fakher Eldin, Syria/Germany/Palestine/Qatar

Honorable Mentions:
The Sea Ahead dir. Ely Dagher, Lebanon
A Second Life dir. Anis Lassoued, Tunisia

Shall I Compare You to a Summer's Day? - Ruya Visionary Award

Ruya Visionary Award: Shall I Compare You to a Summer’s Day?
Directed by Mohammad Shawky Hassan, Egypt

Honorable Mentions:
Ashkal dir. Youssef Chebbi, Tunisia
The Stranger dir. Ameer Fakher Eldin, Syria/Germany/Palestine/Qatar

2022 Arab Film Festival Award Winners Memory Box - Audience Award

Audience Award: Memory Box
Directed by Joana Hadjithomas & Khalil Joreige, Lebanon

Congratulations to all the winners! A sincere thank you to our jury chaired by Rita Baghdadi, to every talented filmmaker who submitted their films to our festival, and to everyone who attended the 26th Arab Film Festival, whether in-person or online. We can’t wait to see you again next year!