Full Biography

"A Socio-Political Cinema Activist"

Hala El Kouch - December 13th, 1995.

She grew up in Lagos, Nigeria ever since she was nine months old. Then, she came back to Beirut, Lebanon for her studies in 2008.

She first graduated with a bachelor in and audio visual studies with distinction as the top of her class from The Lebanese University Of Fine Arts. During that time, Hala had competed with almost all the art universities across Lebanon and won "The First Place Award"  in "Besme Photography Competition", 2015. 

During 2017, her graduation short fiction film “Fishing Out Of The Sea” was her debut as a film director. It participated in more than twelve international and local film festivals. It won the first-place award as The Best Short Fiction Film” in more than six international Film Festivals such as: The European Film Festival, The Beirut Greek International Film Festival, Tripoli Film Festival, Beirut Shorts, Lebanese Independent Film Festival and far many others.

Hala was then recognized and awarded by the Lebanese University as one of their top students.

In 2019, she then pursued her masters in Film Directing at the Lebanese University of Fine Arts. The topic of her research was based over Cinematherapy. She used Zyara the docu-series as a subject of evaluation and analysis. She also graduated as the top of her class with distinction.

In the mean time, Hala had participated in many intensive documentary film workshops between Beirut and across Canada, and Europe. She’s trained with La Femis, with The National Film School of Denmark, with Rola Tahir, Benoit Labourdette, Sarah Moshman, Thomas Koner, Heino Decker, Dieudo Hamadi, Quentin Laurent and many other highly professional international filmmakers. However, a specific one had reshaped her entire filmmaking career. She switched from fiction/entertainment to the world of documentary/reality, and has never stopped experimenting and exploring since 2018.

In 2020, she decided to work on her first independent medium length docu-fiction film The Perfect Picture”This film was a huge success both professionally and personally. It has been recognized by the worlds leading documentary film festivals in the world. It premiered at IDFA, then continued to HOTDOCS, and continued traveling through more than twenty-five other International Film Festivals across the globe. It has won eight awards till this day and has been acknowledge as “Best creative Documentary” within many festivals one of which Women Voices Now, Los Angeles. The film was also recognized by ARGO and YEMA where it is also streaming online.

During 2021, Hala was also awarded the title of “Woman With Vision” through a photography competition she won first place award in organized by CANON ME. She got a full year mentorship with Tasneem Al Sultan.

Hala is currently working on her first docu-fiction feature film “The Place Where I Belong” that has recently been officially selected to take part in IDFA Space Program 2022. She is actually also a film professor at the International College of Beirut. In the years to come, she aspires to continue her PhD studies in cinema-therapy.