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Astana, Kazakhstan • 23 May, 2024 | 15:43
1 min read

Kazakh Drama 'Madina' Receives Special Recognition at VC Film Fest

The jury praised the all-women crew, led by director Aizhan Kassymbekova and lead actress Madina Akylbekova

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Still from the movie

Kazakh drama film Madina, directed by Aizhan Kassymbekova and starring Madina Akylbekova, received Special Recognition awards at the 40th VC Film Fest in Los Angeles, QazMonitor reports citing the festival’s press service.

The film: Madina follows the story of its titular character, a single mother who raises her daughter while also caring for her younger brother and mother. By day, she teaches dance to children and adults, and by night, she works as a dancer at events. Between shifts, she spends time with her family, tackling their various challenges. The plot is partly based on the real-life experiences of lead actress Madina Akylbekova.

“We were moved by the way this film, led by an all-woman crew, centered the oppressed lived experiences of the lead actress and other resilient Kazakh women as a way to bring visibility and impart change in the Kazakh community. The film is equally tender as it is powerful, and we look forward to more from this team,”

shared the jury at the VC Film Fest.

The lead actress was also awarded a Special Recognition for her performance. The jury highlighted that Akylbekova's portrayal brought her personal experiences to the big screen, showcasing resilience and courage in telling the truth.

Last September, Madina was selected to premiere at the Tokyo International Film Festival.

VC Film Fest: Since its establishment in 1983, the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival has showcased over 5,000 films, videos, and digital media works created by Asian and Pacific Islander artists. The festival also features seminars, panels, in-person guest appearances, and awards ceremonies to celebrate filmmakers' achievements.

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