Interview

Divine Darine

By Janine Ayoub
April 18, 2017

Modesty emanates from her fine features. She unveils her dreamy eyes that she hid through her sunglasses. She dreamed big and worked hard to become one of the most sought-after professional actresses in the region today.

Her latest Lebanese thriller titled "Nuts" by Tarek Sikias turns her into a poker addict who plunges into the infernal spiral of the game.

Who is Darine Hamze? Sister of three, Darine's past holds painful scars. In the midst of civil war, her father, an engineer in aeronautics and her mother, a painter, sent her along with her brothers to boarding school in London in the very selective establishment of Sabis. Nothing destined her to be an actress.

After studying theater at the Faculty of Fine Arts of the Lebanese University, Darine was soon offered roles in local series. An academic with a Bac + 6 education, Darine shares her passion for many years with her students in various Lebanese universities. She holds a Master's degree in Media Arts from the University of Westminster and took the opportunity to improve her skills: a film workshop at Columbia University, another at Stella Adler...

Darine Hamze has a large number of films, and has often played toxic characters like Loubna in Halal Love by Assad Fouladkar, a divorced Muslim woman who doesn't hesitate to relive a new love story with the local grocer.

In 2011, Darine covered herself with a veil and lent her image to the Lebanese series "Al Ghaliboun", broadcasted on the Lebanese channel Al Manar which reflects the spirit of the resistance and the Lebanese people in the south of the country invaded by Israel in The 1980s. A touching role, which is why we were shocked at what she had offered the public next. Indeed, a year later, the television movie for Arte, Beirut Hotel by Danielle Arbid, attracted a thunder of criticism and was banned from broadcast in the Arab world. Well, almost. Thanks to piracy, the Lebanese public discovered Zoha, a young singer who falls in love with a French lawyer.

Do you remember the musical scenes of Beirut Hotel? From Abdel Halim Hafez to Asmahane or Feyrouz, with a touch of modernity by Zeid Hamdan, Darine surprised us with her musical performance.   In 2006, she performed and sang alongside the choir of her idol Feyrouz in "Sahhel Nom" at the Baalbeck festival and BIEL.

Except that the spectators often find it hard to dissociate Darine from her role in Beirut Hotel. Her daring scenes have made headlines. "Cinematographic journalism is not a status given to any journalist. The specialized press in Lebanon suffers from a lack of culture and training, "she said.

How did Darine succeed when others failed? By accepting criticism, as harsh as it may be. "I have understood that the Lebanese public is still not ready to see a Lebanese actress in such a role," she said.

For the rest of the article, check out our March 2017 issue.

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