Release date20 May 2002 (2002-05-20) (Cannes) Initial releaseNovember 22, 2002 (United Kingdom) CastAhidjo Mahamat Moussa (Tahir), Hamza Moctar Aguid (Amine), Zara Haroun (Achta, la mère), Hassan Boulama (Hassan), Mounira Khalil (la muette), Diego Mustapha Ngarade (l'oncle Adoum) Music directorAli Farka Toure, Diego Moustapha Ngarade Similar moviesSet in Africa, Set in deserts, Dramas
Abouna (Arabic: أبون, English: "Our Father") is a 2002 film by Chadian director Mahamat Saleh Haroun. It was filmed on location in Gaoui and N'Djamena, Chad. It was the Chadian submission for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film at the 75th Academy Awards but was not nominated.
Two boys (Tahir and Amine) awake one morning to find that their father has abandoned their family. Shocked, they begin to misbehave. While surreptitiously watching a movie, they think they see their father speaking to them and steal the film to examine the frames. Their mother (Achta) eventually despairs and sends them to Koranic school. Unhappy, they plan their escape until the eldest boy falls in love with a deaf girl (Khalil).
Casting and production
Ahidjo Mahamat Moussa, who played the 15-year-old Tahir, was offered a choice of boys to play his younger brother Amine. He eventually chose eight-year-old Hamza Moctar Aguid because he felt that Aguid could really be his brother.
After each day for shooting, film was sent 2600 miles to Paris for processing. Only after waiting several days, when word came back that there were no problems, would shooting resume.
The film won the following awards:
2002 Hong Kong International Film Festival: Firebird Award - Special Mention
2002 Kerala International Film Festival: FIPRESCI Prize and Golden Crow Pheasant
2003 Ouagadougou Panafrican Film and Television Festival: Baobab Seed Award, Best Cinematography, INALCO Award and UNICEF Award for Childhood