The renowned Palestinian actor-director joins us to discuss her fascinating and prolific career, which spans roles in politically groundbreaking films from both the Middle East (The Syrian Bride, Lemon Tree, Festival 2013 selection ) and Hollywood (Munich), and her own directorial work, such as 2012’s acclaimed short Inheritance.
In Conversation With... Hiam Abbass
Palestinian actor and filmmaker Hiam Abbass is a commanding figure in art-house cinema. With films like Satin rouge, The Syrian Bride, and Paradise Now, Abbass built a reputation for embracing complex roles often set amongst conflict in the Middle East. Her breakthrough performance in Steven Spielberg's Munich brought Abbass to international acclaim, and while the increased profile brought exposure, she was outspoken in her refusal to portray characters that perpetuate stereotypes of Arab women and Middle Eastern culture.
Her critically lauded performances in both The Visitor (written and directed by Thomas McCarthy) and Lemon Tree (her second feature for director Eran Riklis) showcase her ability to imbue characters with steely strength. Each role reveals brave acts through small gestures, exhibiting a well-honed craft that generates a strong bond between actor and audience. Abbass has extended her artistic practice behind the camera to direct shorts and features, including her acclaimed 2012 feature debut, Inheritance.
Abbass will share her expertise as an established storyteller who not only promotes cross-cultural understanding, but also inspires exceptional cinema.