Egyptian-Tunisian actress Hend Sabry will be the first Arab woman to sit on the judging panel at the Venice Film Festival, the world’s oldest film festival, when she judges the debut works section next month.
"I am proud to be one of the jury members of Venice Film Festival and I also feel proud that veteran directors Emir Kustrica and Antoinette Liowill be the jury presidents. I also am happy that this announcement coincides with the release of my movie 'El-Feel-el Azraa 2 (The Blue Elephant) which achieved huge success across the Arab world. I hope to be a good ambassador for Arab art at the oldest festival in the world, and one of the three most important festivals in the world," stated Sabry on her official Instagram account.
Sabry was born in 1979 in Kebli, Tunisia. She studied law and completed a master's degree in intellectual property and copyright law in 2004, but by then, she had already been acting for about a decade.
She started her acting career in 1994 with the Tunisian film Samt El Qosour (The Silence of the Palaces) and starred in The Season of Men in 2000. Both movies were directed by Moufida Tlatli.
She was then introduced to the Egyptian cinema by Inas El-Degheidy in 2001 with the film Mozakerat Morahka (The Diary of a Teenager), co-starring alongside Ahmed Ezz.
Sabry has worked on movies and dramas tackling numerous difficulties and stigma facing people, especially women in the Arab world, and she serves as the World Food Program's regional ambassador.
The star has received numerous awards during her cinema career, both for her artistic achievements and for her role in tackling key social issues, including an award from the America Abroad Media organisation in Washington. Sabri married in 2008 and has two daughters, Alia and Laila, who are six and four.