By Karima Rhanem | Morocco TIMES 2/21/2005 | 4:51 pm
A film inspired by the novel “Al-Khubz Al-Hafi” (For Bread Alone”) of the late Moroccan writer Mohamed Choukri will participate in the coming edition of Cannes International Film Festival.The main role of the film is played by the Moroccan International actor Saïd Taghmaoui.
The film, which was shot in Ouarzazate film studios in Morocco, is financed by Italians and will be presented in Italian to Cannes.
“For Bread Alone”, Choukri's autobiography, a classic and moving work, which has already been translated into more than ten languages, speaks for an entire generation of North Africans.
Born during a famine in the Rif mountains, Choukri moved with his family to Tangier. His childhood was spent in abject poverty; eight of his brothers and sisters died of malnutrition or neglect. During his adolescence, Choukri worked for a time as servant to a French family.
Following one of many family disputes, he left the house at the age of 11, embracing a life of homelessness and petty crime. He then returned to Tangier, where he experienced the violence of the 1952 independence riots. These early experiences provided him with material for his first and most famous book, “Al-Khubz Al-Hafi” (For Bread Alone) written in 1972 but not published in Arabic until 1982.
At the age of 20, he decided to learn to read and write classical Arabic - a decision that transformed his life. After mastering the language, he became a teacher and writer, finally being awarded the chair of Arabic Literature at Ibn Batuta College in Tangier. Choukri died of cancer in 2003 at the age of 64