Jehane NoujaimJehane Noujaim. For many within the cultural land of art and philosophy, the name is familiar. She is popularly known as a documentary film director, raised dually in Kuwait and Cairo, although born in America’s Washington D.C. Noujaim’s formative education took the kind of determined track that one would associate with visionary set on creating just that, her own visions. Her training began at the famed coed and independent prep school, Milton Academy. Thereafter, she stayed in Massachusetts and attended Harvard, the private Ivy League university which is also the oldest institution of higher education in the United States.While notoriety and being notable follows many of Harvard’s alumni, Noujaim is not to just be bundled in with the pack, or, get lost among the eight U.S. presidents who became alumni, its sixty-two living billionaires nor its 144 Nobel Laureates. Noujaim is creating a cultural legacy of her own. First, she received high honors in her double major of visual arts and philosophy and graduated magna cum laude. Then she delved into creating her initial body of documentary work, directing Arabic film Mokattam. Some time passed wherein she worked with a few film outlets, including Pennebaker Hegedus Films and MTV News. The latter being where she produced UNfilterd, and won best documentary film from the Directors Guild of America and the International Documentary Association. High honors, awards and recognitions continued to follow Noujaim and her work. Upon winning the TED Prize, a conference that lives by and supports “ideas worth spreading”, Noujaim’s created Pangea Day, a day symbolizing the commonality shared by all humans, ones' heartbeat. Pangea Day, occurred internationally on May 10, 2008 in seven cities, including Cairo, via videoconference for four hours; it streamed film, music and a host of speakers with the effort to use film as the unifier. With such a storied history behind her endeavors Noujaim set the stage for one of her most captivating documentaries yet: The Square. The Square is a film showing this fall, at the New York Film Festival, after premiering at Sundance Film Festival earlier this year in January. As described by the New York Film Festival synopsis, The Square “is a tense, vivid verité portrait of events as they unfolded in Tahrir Square through Arab Spring and beyond, in a newly revised, up-to-the-minute version.”With such stark life capture, it is now wonder this documentary won in its category the Audience Award for World Cinema at Sundance. It is also remarkable to note that Noujaim continued work on The Square this past summer, updating the film with current events of the Egyptian Revolution as it’s occurred in Tahrir. Such commitment to documentary truth earned her the win of People’s Choice Award at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival. It is no doubt that people have bestowed such acclaim to The Square, given Noujaim’s determination to tell the story of the people, protesters who for the past two years have and continue to sit in and riot as part of the revolution. The documentary is made possible through scouring through thousands of hours of footage from citizen journalists and filmmakers who have famously become revolutionary voices, such as Khalid Abdalla, an actor known for roles in The Kite Runner and United 93. Noujaim’s tenacity has followed her and has made her into a director not just of acclaim but also of cultural importance, to Cairo and the world at large. She is one to watch - all puns intended.