The festival was supported: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Lebanese Republic, the Embassy of Lebanon in Russia, the Embassy of Russia in Lebanon, the Ministry of Culture of the Lebanese Republic, the Ministry of Tourism of the Lebanese Republic, the governor of Beirut. Co-organizer of the Festival - the Lebanese department of the Federal Agency for the Commonwealth of Independent States, Compatriots Living Abroad and International Humanitarian Cooperation (Rossotrudnichestvo).
Special representative of the President of the Russian Federation for the Middle East and Africa, deputy Foreign Minister of Russia Mikhail Bogdanov:
The first Russian Film Festival in Lebanon gives the Lebanese public the opportunity to see brand new Russian movies, and is completely in line with the essential and consistent Russian agenda to strengthen all round cooperation with Lebanon. The festival is aimed at further developing and strengthening humanitarian contacts between Russia and Middle Eastern countries. Cinema is a unique tool in the international communication, a universal language, through which representatives of various cultures, ethnicities, and religious denominations can build bridges of mutual understanding and respect, and get to know each other better. We hope that the Lebanese public will be interested in watching the lms of the festival program, will be glad to experience new and exciting feelings, and discover yet another page of the Russian art.
Dr. Amal Abou Zeid, Member of the Lebanese Parliament:
Strong historical bonds manifested in 1943 when Russia was among the rst to recognize Lebanon’s Independence, in 1956 upon the establishment of diplomatic relations between the countries, and in 1946 when Russia vetoed a resolution that does not explicitly provide for the withdrawal of for- eign forces from Lebanon. We share with Russia a friendship expressed in the support given to our children with education, and the protection of their freedoms. Today in the Russian Film Festival in Beirut, we enshrine once again our ties, to form a bridge of communication between the youth of Russia and the youth of Lebanon, and a gate to a world where they experience each other’s culture and traditions, thus opening promising future horizons for the friendship and partnership between Russia and Lebanon.
Special representative of the President of the Russian Federation for International Cul- tural Cooperation, Mikhail Shvydkoy:
A lm’s format, which gives the viewers a unique opportunity to experience emotional journeys - feeling sympathetic towards the characters of the story, living it with them, becoming its part. For 120-140 minutes of the lm, it brings various visitors of a screening hall together, and allows them to become a united audience that is breathing as one. I hope that the screening of Russian films in Lebanon will become a good tradition. Meanwhile, I wish the organizers a lot of success, and enjoyment to the viewers!
Minister of Culture of the Lebanese Republic Mr. Raymond Araygi:
In our modern society, cinema tell more — movies portray cultures, underscore values and share thoughts and experiences. Yet, their most important attribute remains that they create bonds, promote dialogue among cultures and foster tolerance, both of the latter are greatly valued especially at those times where our region is marked by extremism and radicalization. So we will always believe in the healing power and the noble role of the seventh art.
Russia’s Ambassador to Lebanon Aleksandr Zasypkin:
AThe Russian Film Festival in Lebanon ‘5 years in 5 days’ will give the Lebanese audience an opportunity to see Russia’s achievements in this area, and to connect with the things that have been done over the past few years. It is remarkable that the festival takes place during the Year of Cinema in Russia. It is great to see that the festival program is diverse which will let the Lebanese audience choose whatever they are most interested in. Our arts and culture are well known by the Lebanese people. At the same time, it is essential to emphasize the necessity to constantly enrich our knowledge about each other, expanding our communication, for instance, via cinema, which is one of the most accessible, fascinating, and profound art form. I am certain that the festival will become yet another step in our peoples’ rapprochement.
Minister of Tourism Lebanon Michel Pharaon:
We support your important initiative which participates in reviving the cultural ties between Russia and Lebanon, and bring it back to the level of the historic friendship between the two countries and their people.
Lebanon’s Ambassador in Russia, His Excellency Chawki Bou Nassar:
Next October 2016 the first Russian film festival is to be held in Beirut. This is an unprecedented event that will help promote and foster the great cultural and social relations between Russia and Lebanon and play a key role in bringing the people of both countries closer. A round of applause to all of the hard working organizers whose relentless efforts are so very appreciated.
Head of Rossotrudnichestvo branch in Lebanon, Ayrat Ahmetov:
Lebanon is one of the key Middle Eastern countries, with long-standing and strong friendship traditions with Russia. In today’s conditions, it is essential to preserve and develop these amicable relations, to remind oneself and the others that art is the unifying force, which makes it possible to face the challenges of today’s reality. Cinema -- as a universal language for people, regardless of their nationality, views and mentality -- I believe, suits this purpose in the best possible way, making it possible to build a dialogue based on mutual interests, giving us the opportunity to take a fresh look at familiar things and concepts. For the First Russian Film Festival in Lebanon ‘5 years in 5 days’, we have tried to assemble a wide range of contemporary Russian films -- from features and animation to art-house documentaries