North American Premiere | France / Algeria / Qatar / Belgium | 2019 | Drama | 105 min | In French with English subtitles
Directed by: Mounia Meddour
Written by: Mounia Meddour, Fadette Drouard
Cinematography: Léo Lefèvre
Film Editing: Damien Keyeux
Original Score: Rob .
Produced by: Xavier Gens, Grégoire Gensollen (The Ink Connection), Patrick André (High Sea Production), Belkacem Hadjadj (Tayda Film), Vincent Roget (Same Player)
Cast: Lyna Khoudri (Nedjma), Shirine Boutella (Wassila), Amira Hilda Douaouda (Samira), Zahra Doumandji (Kahina)
International Sales: Jour 2 Fête
Mounia Meddour‘s loosely-autobiographical debut feature literally bursts onto the screen with a superlative cast of charismatic newcomers led by gifted Lyna Khoudri (2017 Venice Film Fest Best Actress for Sofia Djama’s The Blessed). Set in Algiers during the “Black Decade” of the 1990s, Papicha follows Nedjima, an 18-year-old university student and feisty fashionista who refuses to let the Algerian Civil War strip away her personal freedoms… or tell her what to wear! But when Islamist insurgents amp up the violence, events turn tragic, and their extremist stranglehold tightens around her world, Nedjima revolts and launches a feminist revolution the only way she knows how — by putting on an emphatic, in-your-face fashion show.
Algerian writer-director Mounia Meddour is the daughter of film director Azzedine Meddour. Facing death threats, she and her family moved to France during the Algerian Civil War. She did her post-graduate studies in journalism, then signed up for a summer directing program at La Fémis film school in Paris. She has directed two documentary films, La Cuisine en héritage (2009) and Cinéma algérien, un nouveau souffle (2011). In 2012, she directed her first narrative short, Edwige, which received a Special Mention at the Journées Cinématographiques in Algiers. Papicha, her first feature, debuted as an official selection in the Un Certain Regard section at Cannes in May, and makes its North American Premiere at COLCOA as Algeria’s official 2020 Academy Award entry.
Presented in association with:
Jour 2 Fête
WIF (Women In Films)
Wine Wine Situation