Private Project


Hamza is an Egyptian young man living in Strasbourg, France. A corporate employee by day and a star DJ by night, Hamza takes us on his journey of seeking balance in his life despite his struggles with estrangement and the dread from his “irrational” dream of being a full-time artist.

  • Karim ElCharkawy
  • Karim ElCharkawy
  • Hamza Kenawy
  • Hamza Kenawy
  • Hamza Kenawy
    Key Cast
  • Yasser Abdelgawad
  • Youssef Hanna
  • Project Title (Original Language):
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short
  • Runtime:
    14 minutes 59 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    September 1, 2023
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
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  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Karim ElCharkawy

Karim ElCharkawy is a writer, director from Egypt. After acquiring a master’s degree in Law from Strasbourg University in 2017, ElCharkawy decided to turn to filmmaking. In 2017, ElCharkawy worked on the creation of “The Other Side”, a personal adult animation project set in a dystopian world tackling the issues of career suggles, identity crisis relationships. At this point, ElCharkawy started taking interest in directing which is when he started taking directing courses with Mohamed Bakir and Runa Alarian and writing courses with Medhat Al Adl. It is at this point that ElCharkawy made the full transition into filmmaking. His latest project is the documentation of a crucial month in the life and career of Hamza, an Egyptian DJ in Strasbourg and his longtime best friend.

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Director Statement

I decided to tell a story because it is very close to my heart as its hero is one of my best friends. He had an impact on my life and I did too on his; our life path’s have intersected, moved in parallel ways and then intersected again in us sharing “irrational” dreams flying in the same sky. The cosmos here is situated in Strasbourg, a city in the North-West of France which has both forged me and tore me down, making me into the person that I am today. This film is an ode to this city.

The film tells the story of my generation and especially those from my community as we didn’t travel looking for financial gain or fleeing harsh circumstances. We traveled because we believed in a dream that has been sold to us since we were children about a better life.

Our struggle is hence not one of survival-and for that I am grateful- but it is a struggle of survival from the cruelty of reality, from depression, exile and the monotony of corporate life which is contrasted by the unending possibilities we see daily on our screens and which continue to live in our heads…

My friend and muse is lost, just like all of us but he is at least aware. I tried to capture the moments with my handheld camera when he gathers the courage needed to talk about his journey as if he’s speaking to himself. I hope that his courage can inspire others and remind them of their dreams that they have forgotten, intentionally or not.