Amr Salama's film Sheikh Jackson will be landing its European premiere in the 61st BFI London Film Festival (4-15 October) within the JOURNEY section that aims to screen films that would transport the viewers and shift their perspectives.
Run by the British Film Institute (BFI), the BFI London Film Festival is one of the oldest 20 festivals according to its starting date. The first round of the festival was launched in 1953 with an aim to become the 'festival of festivals'. The BFI London Film Festival is known for its selectiveness for choosing the best films by the best directors from all over the world. The average number of films that compete at the festival have reached over 300 films from 50 countries around the world. It is considered one of the top 5 international festivals that attract audiences as its ticket sales have surpassed 160 thousand tickets. It is also known for hosting the biggest stars of the European and international cinema, in addition to organizing events that allow the audience to interact with them.
This comes only a few days ahead of Sheikh Jackson's world premiere at the 42nd Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) (September 7-17) within the closing of the Special Presentations section that presents world premieres or Canadian premieres of the year's awaited films, in addition to the most recent films by the world's leading filmmakers. In this section, Sheikh Jackson will compete for the prize of the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) and the Audience Award.
Sheikh Jackson will land its Egyptian and Arab world premiere by opening the first edition of El Gouna Film Festival (September 22 - 29), where it will be competing within the festival's Feature Narrative Competition.
The events of the film take us back to June 25, 2009 as the news of Michael Jackson's death took the world by storm affecting many, especially a preacher who is dubbed "Jackson" during his school days. But, what does a preacher have in common with the King of Pop? More importantly, can he now go back to his normal life, or will his memories and relationships with his loved ones raise the most prominent question in his mind? Is he the Sheikh, Jackson, or both?
Co-produced by The Producers, Film Clinic and iProductions with Daniel Ziskind as Associate Producer, Sheikh Jackson is written and directed by Amr Salama and co-written by Omar Khaled. The film stars Ahmad Al Fishawy, Maged El Kedwany, Ahmed Malek, and Amina Khalil. The film will also feature several guest stars, including Dorra, Basma, and Mahmoud El-Bezzawy. The German company Media Luna is responsible for distributing the film outside the Arab world.