Ali’s Secret – Film Screening

By Mona Daoud

Thursday 30 May 2024 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM

SCREENING + Q&A of ‘Ali’s Secret’ by Egyptian director, Mona Daoud.

This screening is presented by ArtForward.

“Some secrets must never be left hanging”

A couple’s strained relationship is pushed to its limits when Ali’s long estranged friend shows up to stay with them for the weekend, unsettling the already turbulent waters and bringing to the surface a long deeply buried secret.

Ali’s Secret went through so many obstacles before it was finally released in 2020. Since it was written and shot at the end of 2017, it has gone through five edits, and had to await fund raising for post production. Its choppy dialogue, titled frames, and beautiful music score by the talented Dina Ibrahim are some of the film’s signature marks. Written without bearing in mind Egypt’s censorship institution, the film is genuinely truthful in content and language and depicts a common story that remains untold in the Arab world. It was shown at two film festivals and although the director would love to release it to the public in Egypt, certain laws restrict her from doing so without presenting danger to herself and to the actors. So the film, just like its name, continues to be a secret.

Mona Daoud is an Egyptian director, writer, and actress who shifted to filmmaking in 2017 after a 20 year career in writing, publishing and advertising amongst the odd diversions here and there, where she taught English and Art to Bedouins in Sinai, had a dog boarding business, studied dog behavior, and worked on a farm for rescue animals. Her short film Serr Ali (Ali’s Secret) is her first film as both writer and director. She has directed a music video for the song In A Box by Nadya Shanab, and a horsemanship web series titled Horse Moves and is currently developing her second short film titled Alone alongside her first feature length film. As an actress she appeared in the feature film Abdo & Saneya, currently in post production, and starred in two short films, The Push, and Happy Birthday Jesus. Her film Ali’s Secret, screened at LiftOff Sessions Festival, and KASHISH Mumbai International Queer Film Festival. Born in Alexandria, Egypt in 1981, Daoud currently lives in Cairo with her five rescues, a dog, three cats, and a tortoise whom she has named Oscar the Grouch.