Lecturer in Directing (Fiction)

  • Academic
  • Creative Education
Dr Maria Abdel Karim

Dr Maria Abdel Karim is a Lecturer in Directing (Fiction) at the School of Film Media and Performing Arts at the University for the Creative Arts. She is an independent filmmaker (screenwriter, director, producer) with over 10 years of experience in the film and television industry fulfilling various production roles. She has also directed 4 award-winning short films and a feature film.

Dr Maria Abdel Karim


Dr Maria Abdel Karim holds a PhD degree from Bournemouth University in recognition of a program entitled: Women’s voices in Lebanese: crisis, patriarchy and empowerment (2023), a master's degree with distinction in Film Directing from Bournemouth University (2018), and a bachelor's degree with high distinction in communication arts: Radio, TV and Film from Notre Dame University (Lebanon, 2012).

She has been actively working in the media field for almost 10 years. Her first short film, the musical “A Tempo the 3rd Act” (2012) won 2 International Awards “Best Sound in Sapporo Film Festival” and “Best Arab Film in the European Independent Film Festival ECU Paris”. It got selected in more than 10 International Film Festivals. She then co-directed the Award-Winning Lebanese Feature film “Waynoun” “VOID” that has won various awards worldwide, for its script, acting, music composition, and directing and was the official Lebanese submission to the Academy Awards in 2016.

Later, she won the Jury Prize at the 2nd Wutai Mountain Global Film Competition in China for her film A Missing Beat (2019) which was also nominated for the RTS Student Television Awards in London (2019) and was the winner of the FIFOG Silver Award at the Festival International Du Film Oriental De Geneve (2020) for her film Two Women Can Tango (2019). 

IMDB page:


Research statement

Research areas include:

  • Gender representation on screen
  • Arab and Middle eastern cinema
  • Women's cinema
  • Global and transnational cinemas

Research outputs

  • Abdel Karim, M., 2023. Women’s Voices in Lebanese Cinema: Crisis, Patriarchy and Empowerment. Doctoral Thesis (Doctoral). Bournemouth University.
  • Abdel Karim, M., 2023. Dystopian Images of Beirut in The Lebanese Oscar-nominated Film Capernaum (2018). Networking Knowledge: Journal of the MeCCSA Postgraduate Network, 16 (1), https://www.ojs.meccsa.org.uk/index.php/netknow/article/view/676
  • Abdel Karim, M., 2023. The Representation of Child Brides in Two Lebanese Films: Capernaum (2018) dir. Nadine Labaki and The Kite (2003) dir. Randa Chahal. IDEA-Interdisciplinary Discourses, Education and Analysis (3), 22-42, https://www.lcir.co.uk/simp/wp-content/uploads/2023/03/IDEA-issue-3.pdf#page=23
  • Abdel Karim, M., 2021. Queer Representation in Arab and Middle Eastern Films: A Case Study of Women in Caramel (2007), Circumstance (2011), and In Between (2016). Alphaville: Journal of Film and Screen Media, no. 20, 2020, pp. 71–86, https://doi.org/10.33178/alpha.20.06 
  • Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • 2022 – Winner of the Doctoral College Outstanding Contribution Award from Bournemouth University
  • 2020 – Winner of the Silver FIFOG award at the 2020 International Oriental Film Festival of Geneva for my short film Two Women Can Tango (2019)
  • 2019 – Winner of the Special Jury Prize award at the Wutai Mountain Global Short Film Competition (China) for my short film A Missing Beat (2018)
  • 2013 – Winner of the Ahmad Khoder Award for Excellence in Arab Filmmaking at the 8th European Independent Film Festival in Paris for my short film A Tempo the 3rd Act (2012)
  • 2013 – Winner of the Crypton Best Sound Award at the 8th Sapporo Short Film Festival in Japan for my short film A Tempo the 3rd Act (2012)