Rabat – The Moroccan made film, “This is Not a Burqa”, has made the official selection of the 13th edition of the Mobile Film Festival in France. Moroccan actor and filmmaker Imad Fijjaj, primarily known for his work in theater, directed this short film that sheds light on the issue of homophobia in Morocco.
With a running time of one minute, “This is Not a Burqa” portrays the struggle of the LGBT community in Morocco. In addition to the general hatred toward gay people, risk of social rejection, and physical violence, homosexuality is considered illegal. According Article 489 of the Moroccan Penal Code, anyone who commits “lewd or unnatural acts with an individual of the same sex” risks punishment from six months up to three years of imprisonment and a fine ranging from 200 up to 1000 Dirhams.
The Mobile Film Festival was created in 2005 with the mission of finding and promoting new talents around the world.
The competition is open to amateur and professional filmmakers alike, and targets a large number of talents by relying on three simple rules for participants: The film must be made using just 1 mobile phone, 1 minute long in duration, and 1 single subject.
A jury of selected professionals chooses one winner, and gives them the chance of making a professional short film by offering a scholarship of EUR 15,000.