Italo-Iraqi director Haider Rashid has won yet another important recognition for his film Europa. Giuseppe Tornatore, jury president of the Red Sea International Film Festival, bestowed the film the awards for Best Director and Best Actor. The film will “indirectly” represent Italy at the Oscar because, as an Italo-Iraqi production, is Iraq’s candidate in the Best International Film category.

Europa had its world premiere in Cannes at the Quinzaine Des Réalisateurs where it won the Beatrice Sartori International Film Critics’ Award. It was released in Italy by I Wonder Pictures and Unipol Biografilm Collection.

Haider Rashid was born in Florence in 1985 by an Iraqi father and Italian mother. The film tells the story of Kamal who has fled Iraq to try to enter "Fortress Europe". At the Turkish-Bulgarian border, local mercenaries are ruthlessly hunting down migrants. Alone in the forest, Kamal has three days to escape. This story seems to anticipate the dramatic events at the border between Poland and Belarus today.