NEW YORK, NY.-
Lailas Birthday (2008), the latest feature by director Rashid Masharawi (b.1962, Gaza Strip), will have a weeklong run in MoMA
s Roy and Niuta Titus Theaters from May 27 through June 1, 2009.
Lailas Birthday is set in the filmmakers chaotic hometown of Ramallah. The film follows a Palestinian judge turned taxi driver who is trying to arrange a birthday cake and gift for his young daughters birthday. It turns out to be an epic task as he navigates the corruption, hassles, constantly changing political winds, and Israeli checkpoints around the city, all in the space of one single day. Masharawi provides a lively and revealing portrait of both a city and decent man at the breaking point.
Masharawis feature debut, Ticket to Jerusalem (2003), was featured in MoMAs 2003 New Directors/New Films. It followed his 2002 documentary Live from Palestine, which chronicled the editorial and production process of journalists working for the famed Voice of Palestine radio station. Masharawi founded the Cinema Production and Distribution Center, a film initiative that promotes local productions and organizes a mobile film-screening program aimed at bringing high-quality cinema to Palestinian refugee camps.
Lailas Birthday will open theatrically in select US markets this summer and fall, and will be released on DVD before the end of 2009.
MoMA Presents: Lailas Birthday is organized by Laurence Kardish, Senior Curator, Department of Film, The Museum of Modern Art.
Eid Milad Laila (Lailas Birthday). 2008. Palestine/Tunisia/ Netherlands. Written and directed by Rashid Masharawi. With Mohammed Bakri, Areen Omari, Nour Zoubi. In Arabic; English subtitles. Print courtesy of Kino International, New York. 71 min.
Wednesday, May 27, 4:30 (T1)
Thursday, May 28, 7:00 (T2)
Friday, May 29, 7:00 (T1)
Saturday,May 30, 1:30 (T2) & 8:00 (T1)
Sunday, May 31, 2:00 (T1)
Monday, June 1, 8:00 (T1)