DUBAI (Rahnuma) : Nadine Labaki has a rare moment of respite. At home in Beirut for her daughter’s birthday, her punishing tour of the world’s film festivals and awards shows has come to a temporary halt. The interviews, however, haven’t.
Ever since “Capernaum” won the Jury Prize at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, the whole world has wanted a piece of Labaki. A demand that has only intensified since she became the first female Arab artist to be nominated for an Oscar last month.
At the heart of it all lies an unflinching depiction of the lives of street children in Beirut’s slums. In particular, the story of a 12-year-old boy who sues his parents for the life of misery and degradation they have given him.
“This was one of the most difficult and destructive and nurturing and life-changing experiences of my life,” says Labaki, who was the first Lebanese woman to com-pete for the Palme d’Or at Cannes since Heiny Srour in 1974. “I’m not the same person anymore. It completely changed me as a human being, and not only psy-chologically, even physically, and it changed everybody that worked on the film.