Ouidad Elma et Madi Belem
Abbes Zahmani et Madi Belem
Professionals : please contact us to download high resolution videos
about the movie
Growing up in the Moroccan village of Tazzeka, Elias learned the secrets of traditional Moroccan cuisine from his grandmother who raised him. Years later, meeting a top Paris chef and a young woman named Salma inspires him to leave home.
In Paris, Elias faces unstable work and financial hardship as an undocumented immigrant. But he also finds friendship with Souleymane, who helps revive his passion for cooking.
Jean-Philippe Gaud graduated in editing from la Fémis, France’s national film school in Paris. Upon graduation, he directed his first short films and worked as an editor with various directors, in fiction as well as documentary.
A lifelong opera lover, he also directed Rossini’s The Barber of Seville and then Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci.
Alongside Nader Takmil Homayoun, he co-wrote, edited, and produced Tehroun (2009) with their production company Alias Films. Tehroun received the Venice Film Festival Critics’ Week prize and the Angiers Film Festival’s Grand Prize.
In 2015, he founded his own production company, TAKKA FILMS, to direct TAZZEKA, his first feature film.
Tazzeka is first and foremost a story about Elias, who dreams of new horizons.
Tazzeka is a story about destiny. The film follows a classical arc, inspired by traditional coming-of-age narratives. It avoids a dark take on the subject and instead sees rays of hope for its hero. But even if the story ends happily, the film takes a realistic look at immigration and exile.
Tazzeka starts as a chronicle of a village, where simple daily rhythms outweigh dramatic narration. The film’s beginning takes its time sketching out this environment through the eyes of a child growing up in the early 2000s – a period otherwise known for tragic shipwrecks in the Strait of Gibraltar. Ten years later, Elias doesn’t let his brother’s death get in the way of his dreams to move to Paris and test his mettle in the land of gourmet food.
The project’s inception: country, place, and choice.
Starting work on this project, I immediately turned to Morocco for personal and cultural reasons, deeply anchored in the Mediterranean. In winter 2011, I went to Morocco to scout locations and to work on writing. I already had specific ideas about the backdrop I wanted for the film. After a week of scouting, I came across a village in the Tazzeka valley. I knew the film had to start here and nowhere else. I didn’t want an urban setting and certainly didn’t want to shoot in Tangiers or Casablanca. I already knew that the film would sharply contrast the two worlds on either side of the Strait.
Beyond the fact that this culture spoke to me, I didn’t want the protagonist to have a dark past, as would be the case for Africans or Syrians fleeing poverty and war. A Francophone country like Morocco, which has never known armed conflicts, seemed ideal for addressing Western Dreams of Eden
The film’s point of view: anchored in reality with a light tone.
From the first day writing, I knew I wanted to navigate the threshold between drama and comedy. My work is always deeply immersed in reality: I need to observe, communicate, and collect testimonies. Tazzeka is no exception; I rooted my writing in a confrontation between reality and what would become fictional material. I collected a considerable amount of documents: literary works, stories, testimonies, and journalistic accounts on clandestine immigration, as well as recipes and cooking shows.
The film divides into two distinct parts that are linked by their simultaneously comedic and dramatic tone. Tazzeka engages with the humanity of a story about a young, talented man who, in spite of himself, gets caught in a spiral of clandestine immigration. He escapes thanks to his unique talent but also thanks to Souleymane’s friendship and support. In light of this, it’s important that the film end with hopes of success for our hero as he finds his place in society.
written in collaboration with
Simon Mimoun et Chadi Chouman
TAKKA FILMS (France)
Jean-Philippe Gaud et Axelle Hutchings
AWMAN Productions (Maroc) Mohamed Nadif
France / Morocco Crew
Professionals : please contact us to download high resolution photos
May, 5 th 2018
Tazzeka in selection of International Festival of Music, Film, Art and Flavors of the Mediterranean 2018, Ashdod, Israel.
Cinema Globos Max- Tuesday, June 12th, 14h00
February, 1srt 2018
Tazzeka, favorite in International Festival of Aubagne.
Screening dates :
Cinema Pagnol, Tuesday, March 20th, 13h30
Thursday, March 22nd, 13h30
October 3rd 2017
Tazzeka in CINEMED official selection Festival International du Cinéma Méditerranéen à Montpellier
Screening dates :
Corum- Salle Pasteur, Sunday, October 22nd, 12h
Corum-Salle Pasteur, Tuesday, October 24th, 14h