ROME — The Doha Film Institute has appointed banking exec Abdulaziz Al Khater as its CEO, replacing Amanda Palmer, who stepped down in July.
The appointment of Al Khater, who joins DFI after holding senior positions with Intl. Bank of Qatar, HSBC and, most recently, Al Khalij Commercial Bank, is the latest case of a film entity in the region tapping into local, rather than Western, leadership.
The Doha Film Institute oversees the Doha Tribeca Film Festival as well as Qatar’s year-round film funding and training initiatives.
Palmer, who set up and ran the fest’s first three editions, and also managed the org’s year-round film funding, vocational and educational programs, stepped down in July to launch an Arab talent agency and production shingle.
The Doha Tribeca Film Festival recently announced expanded dates — from five days to eight, running Nov. 17-24 — and plans for greater integration with the local community.
As part of the expansion, Doha has now added the city’s historic central Souq Waqif as a fest hub besides the Katara cultural village.
As previously announced, the 4th Doha Tribeca fest will open with Mira Nair’s “The Reluctant Fundamentalist,” which DFI financed entirely.
DFI also co-financed “The Prophet,” the animated adaptation of Khalil Gibran’s classic novel, produced by Salma Hayek and Participant Media and helmed by Gary Tarn.