Middle East Advisory Council
Award-winning filmmaker/actress Nadine Labaki was born in Lebanon, and grew up during the years of civil war, obtaining a degree in Audiovisual Studies in 1997 from Beirut’s Saint Joseph University. Her graduation film won the Best Short Film Award in Paris at the Biennale of Arab Cinema and she immediately moved into directing television commercials and music videos for popular artists in the region, garnering several awards.
In 2008, Variety recognized her on their ‘10 Directors to Watch’ list and she received the Insignia of Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters from the French Ministry of Culture. Nadine’s second feature, Where Do We Go Now?, which she wrote, directed and starred in, premiered at Cannes, in 2011’s Uncertain Regard category. It went on to win the Cadillac People’s Choice Award at the Toronto International Film Festival, where it was immediately picked up by Sony Pictures Classics and then screened at Sundance in 2012. Where Do We Go Now? was nominated for Best Foreign Film by the Los Angeles Critics Choice Awards and is Lebanon’s highest- grossing Arabic film to date.
Nadine was on the jury at 2012’s Venice Film Festival, where she was also nominated for the Gucci Women in Film Award. She was on the jury at 2013’s Sundance Film Festival and at Belgium’s Namur/Francophone Film Festival, where she was Jury President. She is mentioned on many “Top” lists for female directors, influential women, and people in Lebanese history. Nadine is also extremely active in humanitarian efforts, focusing most intensely on disaster relief and children of war-torn nations.