Adil el Arbi BY (c) Per Bernal

Citizenship award 2023

The 19th P&V Foundation Citizenship Award goes to Adil El Arbi, a film director and scriptwriter who is socially committed to young people. The Citizenship Prize is awarded on 26 October 2023 in Brussels.

The citizenship award allows Adil El Arbi to support a project of his choice that aligns with the mission of the P&V Foundation. He chose the Talent Factory of WAJOW, where a diverse group of 30 young filmmakers and directors develop their skills in film and online content creation over a period of 9 months, with the ultimate goal of producing their own vertical short film. Additionally, Adil El Arbi received an engraving by artist Philip Aguirre y Otegui.

A career close to the stars...

Adil El Arbi, born in 1988 in Edegem (near Antwerp), has made his marks on the Belgian and international film industry with films such as Black, Rebel and the Bad Boys series starring Will Smith.
Through his career, Adil El Arbi has managed to shatter the cliché of inaccessibility. In a natural way, he manages to decipher a youth plagued by violence, radicalisation, joy and love. He knows these young people well and they inspire him. He is driven by a desire to show a world of open opportunities, far from the clichés of social mobility through sport or music. Culture is a possible way, but for that it needs to resemble society and be more inclusive. That's why, alongside his career, he has been committed to youth for many years. This year's Citizenship Award wants to highlight all those aspects of his career.

And a commitment as close as possible to his origins

His film career is a concrete example of this, but not the only one. He is also committed to social causes. He campaigns for diversity and inclusion in the film industry and encourages the representation of minorities. His work often reflects the experiences and challenges of people from diverse backgrounds. Without adopting a moralistic approach, he puts his finger on the wounds of society. 
He puts his words into action when he and Bilall Fallah launch the WAJOW project: a platform by and for young people that connects different cultures, backgrounds and ages through a shared passion for film and online creation. It encourages passionate people to reach their full potential.

A role model for young people 

Because of his background and his commitment, Adil El Arbi embodies the values of the Foundation, such as the emancipation of young people. Adil El Arbi: "'I am particularly opposed to the mentality that will say "it will never work anyway, because…". Why give up without trying, or after failing once? Who would have ever thought that two boys from Moroccan origin from Belgium would direct Bad Boys? Yet they succeeded. You have to believe in it and work for it. You have to develop technical skills, have something to say and be willing to persevere.”
For Olivier Servais and Jessy Siongers, Presidents of the Foundation, "Adil embodies the positive values of change; he is not a victim. We see him as a bridge-builder between different cultures, between different generations and between different groups of young people. He tackles cross-cutting social issues, such as equal rights for women and men. What's more, through our projects we are convinced that culture is a lever for inclusion, and Adil is a magnificent example of this.”

Download the brochure of the laureate 2023

Press review


De Morgen,"Adil El Arbi krijgt Burgerschapsprijs 2023 voor zijn rol als culturele bruggenbouwer"26/10/2023 p.7

Knack, han Renard, "De Spielberg van Molenbeek? Anyday !" 25/10/2023,p.8-11

Le Soir, Béatrice Delvaux, Gaëlle Maury, "Soyez les ambassadeurs et pas les guerriers de votre origine ou de votre culture" p. 12-13

Le Vif, Han Renard, ''Je veux avant tout rassembler les gens" 09/11/2023 p. 10-14

Online:, '' Le réalisateur Adil El Arbi récompensé d'un prix de la citoyenneté, 25/10/23

De Morgen, 'Het is mega-arrogant om te zeggen dat je een rolmodel wilt zijn'’28/10/2023 

DayFr: Director Adil El Arbi awarded a citizenship prize

DH/Les Sports+,"Le réalisateur Adil El Arbi récompensé d'un prix de la citoyenneté "25/10/2023

HLN: “Hij is een bruggenbouwer tussen culturen en generaties”25/10/2023

La Libre, "Le réalisateur Adil El Arbi récompensé d'un prix de la citoyenneté - "25/10/2023

Le Vif, Han Renard ''Adil El Arbi: Spielberg de Molenbeek"11/11/2023

MO*, Gie Goris, "Adil el arbi:‘Als wij de deur openen voor een volgende generatie, kunnen zij hun dromen waarmaken‘" 25/10/2023

RTBF,"Le réalisateur Adil El Arbi récompensé d’un prix de la citoyenneté" 25/10/2023

RTL Info,"Le réalisateur Adil El Arbi récompensé d'un prix de la citoyenneté" 25/10/2023

VRT Radio 2: Filmregisseur Adil El Arbi wint Burgerschapsprijs: "Hele eer dat mijn werk zo wordt bekroond " 25/10/2023

25 October 2023

With the support of logo pv group