Very little is known about the biography of the late Wardia (or Ouardia). It is a sad reflection of the indifference with which we treat our artists, and Wardia was a great artist. I don’t think there is a single Algerian face Wardia didn’t bring a smile to. Larger than life is what comes to mind when speaking of her, a genereous lady, with a great natural talent. When I was a kid, I used to call her Khalti Wardia (Auntie Wardia), I remember that initially, I found her very loud and the roles she acted in her movies seemed quite scandaleous to me. But I grew to be fond of her because I felt that she was simply spontaneous and authentic. Funny too, hilarious actually. Wardia seemed like a lady whose only mission in life was to bring a smile to people’s faces. Except that it felt genuinely spontaneous, she was at ease in all her roles. She acted in a number of films but sadly, her cinematographic career wasn’t as long as it could have been had death not taken her prematurely.
Wardia acted in a number of films including:
- De Hollywood à Tamanrasset (1991), a film by Mahmoud Zemmouri. This film addresses the impact of the advent of satellite TV on Algerian society in a comic fantasy style.
- Taxi El Makhfi (Clandestin) (1989), a film by Ben Omar Bakhti. This film explores the difficulties of everyday life in Algeria through a journey undertaken by 9 people on their way from Bousaada to Algiers. Wardia played the role of a middle aged woman who deals in the black market with things sent to her by her daughter who emigrated to France. She has a mentally disabled son who accompanies her in the journey to carry her heavy suitcases full of stuff destined for sale.
She also featured in these films:
- Un toit, une famille (1982), a film by Mustapha Ben Mabrouk
- Khoud Maatak Allah (1981)
- Kahla aw Bayda (1981), a film by Abderahmane Bouguermouh
- Leila et les autres (1977), a film by Sid Ali Mazif about women’s struggle for the right to employment
In addition, Wardia acted in a number of TV shows. Here are some clips which show Wardia in a variety of her works in the cinema and television:
A compilation of clips from the archives of the ENTV, chosen by the ENTV in a hommage to Wardia:
A clip from the film Khoud Maatak Allah, featuring Wardia and starring the unforgettable Mustapha El Anka: