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Egyptian and Lebanese film festivals censor 'I Say Dust' because of a same-sex kiss

Egyptian and Lebanese film festivals censor 'I Say Dust' because of a same-sex kiss

In making her short film “I Say Dust,” Darine Hotait wanted to explore Arab American identity from her perspective as a New York-based American Lebanese writer and director. It just so happened that her two lead characters would be women in their 20s who share a kiss. That kiss, however, has put “I Say Dust” at the center of a long-standing discussion about censorship after it was recently banned from two film festivals in the Middle East.

“I didn't really know what to think,” Hotait said. “I always thought that I might be asked to remove [the kissing] scene from the film -- not that I was going to agree to that -- but I never...

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