The Yacoubian Building (Egypt: 2006)


Marwan Hamed

Cast list

Zaki El Dessouki: Adel Emam

Mohammad Azzam: Nour El-Sherif

Christine: Yousra

Dawlat El Dessouky: Isaad Younis

Malaak: Ahmed Bedier 

Bothayna: Hend Sabry

Hatem Rachid: Khaled El Sawy

Kamal El Fouly: Khaled Saleh

Fanous: Ahmed Rateb 

Soda: Somaya El Khashab

Abd Raboh: Bassem Samma

Taha El Shazly: Mohamed Imam 

Fekry Abdel Shaheed: Youssef Dawoud 


Based on the novel, The Yacoubian Building (2002) by Alaa Al Aswany.

Language: Arabic.

Release date: June 21, 2006.

Running time: 165 minutes.

Budget: $3.5 Million. Considered to be the highest-budgeted film in the history of Egyptian cinema. The film debuted to box office returns of over LE 6,000,000 in its first week, giving it the record for the biggest debut ever for a theatrical film in Egypt. Cumulative profits of LE 20 million during its initial theatrical run, making it one of the most profitable films in Egyptian cinematic history.


Woven through a series of interconnected plots situated around the Yacoubian Building; a run down apartment building set in the middle of Cairo, the film centres around the established power relations and hierarchies within the inhabitance of the city. Locating both the wealthy and the poor, The Youcabian Building becomes the locus of varying and intersecting struggles of power, from corruption to sexual harassment, to homosexuality, religion and drugs. The film portrays the rampant social inequalities and persistent strife to establish oneself in the Egyptian social. 


Daniels, Kate. “Film Review: The Yacoubian Building (2006).” Global Media and Communication, vol. 4, no. 1, 2008, pp. 107–111., doi:10.1177/1742766507086855.

Street, Steven. "The Yacoubian Building (review)." The Missouri Review, vol. 30 no. 1, 2007, pp. 143-144. Project MUSEdoi:10.1353/mis.2007.0090

Academic Articles

Gardaz, Michel (2016) “The Path of Jihad in the Yacoubian Building,” Journal of Religion & Film: Vol. 13 : Iss. 1 , Article 4. Available at:

Tartoussieh, Karim. “The Yacoubian Building: A Slice of Pre-January 25 Egyptian Society?”Cinema Journal, vol. 52, no. 1, 2012, pp. 156–159., doi:10.1353/cj.2012.0102




Submission by Alicia Lapeña-Barry

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