FRONT ROW INKS MENA DISTRIBUTION RIGHTS FOR CONTROVERSIAL LEBANESE DOCUMENTARY “ENOUGH! Lebanon’s Darkest Hour” FROM AWARD-WINNING DIRECTOR DAIZY GEDEON
Beirut, August 31, 2021 – MENA-based leading independent film distributor Front Row Filmed Entertainment has inked a deal with Australian production company Dream Creations International for the distribution rights of the explosive documentary “ENOUGH! Lebanon’s Darkest Hour”.
The film is directed by Lebanese-born Australian filmmaker Daizy Gedeon and tackles many of Lebanon’s challenging issues including deep state corruption, mismanagement of government institutions and infrastructure, embezzlement of funds, and the political actors and parties behind the country’s collapse over the post-war decades, culminating in the tragic August 4 port explosion that left over 200 civilians and civil servants dead and countless others injured and destitute. It recently won the Better World Fund and Filmfestivals.com Movie That Matters Award 2021 in Cannes. Provided it passes censorship in Lebanon, the feature is set for a Lebanese theatrical premiere date this October followed by the rest of the Middle-East and a string of international territories throughout the fall and a streaming release in February 2022. Dream Creations and Front Row will be submitting the documentary to the Lebanese censorship board in the coming week.
“ENOUGH! Lebanon’s Darkest Hour” also addresses the revolution and the global justice movement that was triggered in 2019 among the locals and the diaspora and highlights the importance of the Lebanese citizens’ roles in the upcoming parliamentary elections which are scheduled for May 2022 and could potentially be make-or-break for the future of the tiny Mediterranean country. Key in this will be the Lebanese expat vote – with an estimated 16 million people, Lebanon has one of the largest diasporas in the world, with the majority divided between Latin America, the US/Canada and Australia.
Ms Gedeon Stated: “The diaspora are the sleeping giant. If we play our cards right we could be a powerful force for change and influence a decisive shift in the balance of power away from the political elite who have abused the people, the country and the diaspora for more than 40 years.”
“The problem is they know it and they are doing everything in their power to silence the millions of expats. They want us to just keep sending money to our relatives to prop up their ponsie scheme and just keep our mouths’ shut. Well, we won’t because we have had ENOUGH!” adds Ms Gedeon.
Throughout the film, Gedeon offers damning evidence of state-level criminal corruption through incisive interviews with whistle-blower, former Director General of the Ministry of Finance, Alain Bifani and through unique first-hand accounts as she interviews several of the country’s leading powerbrokers including MP Gebran Bassil (Minister of Telecommunications, Minister of Energy and Water 2009-2014, Minister of Foreign Affairs 2015 – 2020), Ex-Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Samir Geagea (Executive Chairman of the Lebanese Forces Party), Mohammed Fneich (Hezbollah party member, Minister of Sports and Youth) and much maligned central bank governor Riad Salameh.
“For us, ENOUGH! is not only a fascinating expose on the deeply entrenched corruption that has crippled Lebanon, but also a key message to encourage viewers who can vote to go out there and do their part” adds Front Row CEO Gianluca Chakra. “The Lebanese diaspora counts over 16 mil Lebanese, 1.5 mil of which are only in the US and the majority (circa 8 mil) throughout Latin America.
“Australia alone counts 400,000 but around 1 mil identify as Lebanese. The people now have a chance to save themselves and the nation in the upcoming elections and we sincerely hope that this documentary will help achieve that,” Mr Chakra said.
Ms Gedeon Concluded: “We need everyone to get out and vote, the Lebanese in Lebanon but especially the expats. But the expats MUST register to vote first and there is only a small window between September to 20 November 2021 for them to do that.
“Anyone over the age of 21 can register to vote and should but it is a process and even if they can’t get it done in time for the 2022 elections, they should do it now for the following elections. We have to play the long game and we need everyone to start taking their role seriously and get involved.
“Lebanon NEEDs ALL of US now, not some of us, ALL OF US. The small inconvenience in getting registered is a small price to pay to protect your roots, your identity and defend the legacy of those who have fought and died for our rights as Lebanese.
“I also encourage all expats and any person Lebanese or non-Lebanese who believes in democracy, justice and human rights to sign the petition for free and fair elections in Lebanon in 2022.”
An Arabic dubbed version of the documentary will also be available to watch. Dubbing will be provided by the Operation Unicorn team of Nathalie Masri and Wissam Matar. Masri is a popular Lebanese vlogger and runs Coffee Break, one of the region’s top-rated podcasts, and Matar is Managing Director at Unicorn.
The deal was negotiated by Non-Theatrical sales director Carine Chaiban and CEO Gianluca Chakra for Front Row and Daizy Gedeon and producer Ronny Mouawad for Dreams Creations International.
Join the movement for change in Lebanon:
ENOUGH! Lebanon’s Darkest Hour is set to play in the following festivals:
- Beirut Karama Human Rights Festival 23-26 Sep
- APOX Film festival Croatia, 28 Sept
- Chelsea Film Festival New York, Oct 14
- Fort Lauderdale Intl Film Festival, Nov 5
- Docs Without Borders Film Festival, Jan 9, 2022
For General & Press Inquiries: Daizy Gedeon +61 401 638 444 / [email protected]
For Distribution Inquiries: Eli Touma+971525247666 / [email protected]
About Front Row Filmed Entertainment
Front Row Filmed Entertainment is a leading independent film distribution company that acquires all rights for distribution in the Middle East and North Africa based in Dubai (UAE) and with offices in Kuwait and Lebanon. Front Row was launched in 2003 by Gianluca & Michel Chakra and currently boasts a film library of close to 1,000 titles. The company is also partnered with Kuwait National Cinema Company (KNCC) and KSA’s leading cinema chain, MUVI CINEMAS under the banner of Front Row Arabia.
Front Row’s recent releases include the 6-time Academy Award nominated THE FATHER, starring Anthony Hopkins and Olivia Colman, ANNETTE, the opening film of the 74th Cannes Film Festival, A24’s THE GREEN KNIGHT starring Dev Patel as well as the blockbuster action hit THE MARKSMAN, starring Liam Neeson. The company’s upcoming slate includes Paul Schrader’s THE CARD COUNTER starring Oscar Isaac, Sean Penn’s FLAG DAY as well as Michael Gracey’s Robbie Williams biopic, BETTER MAN.
Front Row’s latest production slate includes the Arabic language adaptation of the Italian smash hit feature PERFECT STRANGERS, set to premiere in Q4 2021 and the upcoming horror feature THE QUEEN MARY, directed by Gary Shore.
About Dream Creations International
“Dream Creations International in an independent film house whose purpose is to find and tell real stories that alter opinions and change the world.
By identifying the silenced issues that impact our people, planet and purpose, we educate and enlighten people through our unbiased and honest search for the facts, uniting into an amplified, global voice for truth, hope and a better world.”
Dream Creations International’s previous work includes Lebanon…Imprisoned Splendor, featuring the legendary Omar Sharif.