Years after leaving her Palestinian village to pursue an acting career in France, Emmy-nominated Hiam Abbass (SUCCESSION, RAMY, BLADE RUNNER) returns home with her daughter, in this intimate documentary about four generations of women and their shared legacy of separation.
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France, Palestine, Belgium, Qatar | 2023 | 82 minutes | Color | French, Palestinian Arabic |
In her early twenties, Hiam Abbass (Emmy-nominated for Succession) left her native Palestinian village to follow her dream of becoming an actress in Europe, leaving behind her mother, grandmother, and seven sisters. Thirty years later, her filmmaker daughter Lina returns with her to the village and questions for the first time her mother’s bold choices, her chosen exile and the way the women in their family influenced both their lives. Set between past and present, BYE BYE TIBERIAS pieces together images of today, family footage from the nineties and historical archives to portray four generations of daring Palestinian women who keep their story and legacy alive through the strength of their bonds, despite exile, dispossession, and heartbreak.
Palestine’s entry for Best International Feature in the 2024 Academy Awards, this second feature from Lina Soualem premiered at Venice, won the Grierson Award at the BFI London Film Festival, had its North American Premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, and won the shared jury prize at the Marrakech International Film Festival. An important film that beautifully portrays the complexity of Arab women’s lives.
"BYE BYE TIBERIAS cements Soualem’s status as a documentary filmmaker to watch."
"Suffused with the scents of Palestine, the film is an instructive and touching mosaic where past and present overlap, and a keen sense of heritage and transmission shines through."
"Filmmaker Lina Soualem’s sentimental journey with her actress mother Hiam Abbass becomes a powerful celebration of lives marked by separation, exile and erasure."
"Unlike other Palestinian narratives, which focus on the broad diaspora, the Gaza Strip or the occupied West Bank, BYE BYE TIBERIAS documents a family displaced by the 1948 Arab-Israeli war from one city to another within modern-day Israel, where they retained citizenship but lived in a Palestinian village largely segregated from Jewish Israeli life."
"Created by a female filmmaker about the women in her family, BYE BYE TIBERIAS makes no bones about its quiet celebration and gratitude for women's strength... Soualem’s documentary puts a human lens on what can be soulless and cold headlines about the Israel-Palestine conflict."
SCREENING HIGHLIGHTS AND AWARDS
- Palestine’s Entry for Best International Feature, 2024 Academy Awards
- Nominated for Best Documentary at Film Independent Spirit Awards 2024
- Jury Prize at Marrakech Film Festival 2023
- Grierson Award in Documentary Competition at BFI London Film Festival 2023
- Award Ulysse Decipro – Montpellier Méditerranée Métropole in the Documentary Competition at Cinemed 2023
- Audience Award at FIFAM Festival International du Film d’Amiens 2023
- Premio Michele Mancini at Efebo d’Oro festival 2023
- Venice Film Festival – Giornate degli Autori (World Premiere)
- Toronto Film Festival (North American Premiere)
- BFI London Film Festival (UK Premiere)
- IDFA (Dutch Premiere)
- RIDM (Canadian Premiere)
- Marrakech Film Festival (MENA Premiere)
- DOK Leipzig (German Premiere)
- Chicago Film Festival (US Premiere)
- CINEMED (French Premiere)
- Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival (South Asian Premiere)
- DOC NYC (NYC Premiere)
- Palm Springs International Film Festival (Canadian Premiere)
- ZINEBI (Spanish Premiere)
- Arab Film Festival Tubingen
- Bristol Palestine Film Festival
- MIDDLE EAST NOW Festival
- Efebo d’Oro
- Porto/Post/Doc (Portuguese Premiere)
- Exground Filmfest
- London Palestine Film Festival
Lina Soualem, a French-Palestinian-Algerian filmmaker and actress, was born and is based in Paris. After completing her studies in History and Political Science at La Sorbonne University, she worked as a programmer for the International Human Rights Film Festival in Buenos Aires. Soualem's debut feature documentary, "Their Algeria," premiered at the Visions du Réel International Film Festival in 2020. It won the First Film Award at the CINEMED Montpellier International Festival of Mediterranean Film, the Best Arab Documentary Award at the El Gouna Film Festival, and the Best Documentary Award at the Cinemania Film Festival in 2021, along with a dozen other accolades. Lina Soualem has also acted in three feature films, directed by Hafsia Herzi, Hiam Abbass, and Rayhana. She is currently engaged in writing for fiction, documentaries, and TV series. (12/23)