After graduating in audiovisual studies from the University of Beirut, she directed adverts and music videos that frequently won awards. In 2004, she embarked on a Festival de Cannes Cinéfondation Residency to write and develop Caramel, her first feature film, shot two years later and showcased at the Directors' Fortnight in 2007. This joyous, rebellious ode to female camaraderie was distributed worldwide and became the most successful Lebanese film export of all time. Nadine Labaki continued to explore the female condition and religious tensions in Where Do We Go Now?, a bold, universal fable on tolerance that premiered at Un Certain Regard in 2011.
In 2018, Nadine Labaki was selected for Competition with her powerfully moving Capernaum, a poignant manifesto on damaged childhood, refugees and the cracks in a society that turns its back on humanity, which sent shockwaves around the Croisette. Nadine Labaki won the Jury Prize, that year chaired by Cate Blanchett, and gave an unforgettable speech accompanied by young actor and Syrian refugee, Zain Al Rafeea. Nominated for a Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Foreign Film, Capernaum made its Lebanese director the first woman from the Arabic-speaking world to be nominated in this category.
- President Un Certain Regard, 2019
- Member Un Certain Regard, 2015