Cinema for Prisoners Too, as JCC Film Festival Kicks Off

Prisoners at a film screening during the JCC film festival at the Oudhna prison in Ben Arous on October 30, 2021. Photo by Ghaya Ben Mbarek.

As Tunisia’s biggest annual film festival, the Carthage Cinema Days (JCC) kicked off on Sunday, October 30, the traditionally desperate search for tickets began. But one group of people received their own private film screening: about 150 prisoners from the Oudhna Civil Prison, including 30 female prisoners who were brought in from the Manouba Women’s Prison facility.

“This was my first time in a prison and I was horrified and scared that the film would not appeal to them [the prisoners]. However, seeing their feedback, claps and the happiness in their eyes afterwards was the best thing that happened today,” Egyptian filmmaker Ali Al-Araby told Meshkal/Nawaat after the prisoners watched his documentary “Captains of Zaatari…”

This article was produced as part of a reporting partnership between Meshkal and Nawaat. To read the full article, click here.