600 Photos of Egyptian Cinema Unveiled for the First Time

Press Release

Akkasah, the Center for Photography at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD), has released the Samir Farid Collection, 600 never-seen-before photographs from Egyptian cinema.

The Akkasah Center acquired the negatives from a donated collection of the late Samir Farid, a prominent Egyptian writer, scholar, and leading film critic.

The collection features a wide range of negatives taken on sets of various Egyptian films, from publicity shots, to candid pictures of cast and crew, and images captured while filming behind the scenes.

Available on the Center’s website, the collection will present a variety of negatives dated between 1940 and 1990, demonstrating social and historical changes over a fifty year timespan.

My Only Love | Actors in Image: Omar Sharif. Copyright: Akkasah: Center for Photography

Given the fragile nature of these negatives, Akkasah uses the best in industry practice to preserve and digitize these images. The negatives are scanned and then processed, in order to identify the metadata associated with the images, including the films from which they originate, and the actors and directors who appear in them.

Through this painstaking process, the digital archive seeks to preserve photographs that can easily be lost, and ensure the images are available to audiences online for ease of access. To date, the Center has published over 10,000 photographs.

About NYU Abu Dhabi

NYU Abu Dhabi is the first comprehensive liberal arts and research campus in the Middle East to be operated abroad by a major American research university. NYU Abu Dhabi has integrated a highly selective undergraduate curriculum across the disciplines with a world center for advanced research and scholarship. The university enables its students in the sciences, engineering, social sciences, humanities, and arts to succeed in an increasingly interdependent world and advance cooperation and progress on humanity’s shared challenges. NYU Abu Dhabi’s high-achieving students have come from over 115 countries and speak over 115 languages. Together, NYU's campuses in New York, Abu Dhabi, and Shanghai form the backbone of a unique global university, giving faculty and students opportunities to experience varied learning environments and immersion in other cultures at one or more of the numerous study-abroad sites NYU maintains on six continents.