Middle Eastern event to play Dec. 6-14

LONDON — The 10th anniversary edition of the Dubai Film Festival will take place Dec. 6-14, it was announced Monday.

“We look forward to rolling out the carpet for our 10th year to celebrate the richness of Arab cinema and further introduce audiences to fresh new talent and original, intelligent and distinctive filmmaking,” said fest chairman Abdulhamid Juma.

The fest enjoyed its most successful edition to date last year with admissions increasing 35% from the previous year, with more than 52,000 tickets sold across 158 films. Student attendance was up 50%.

The 9th edition featured 49 world preems and 15 international preems and was attended by 1,700 industry delegates, and an additional 1,300 accredited media.

During the 2012 fest more than $600,000 in prize money was presented to Muhr Award winners from UAE, the Arab world, Asia and Africa, and an additional $110,000 was distributed in co-production support through the Dubai Film Connection.

Enjaaz, the fest’s post-production support program, announced 13 additional films from the Arab world to receive up to $100,000 each toward helping filmmakers complete their projects; and a new award was launched with Swiss watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen, offered a $100,000 cash prize to help a selected filmmakers bring their vision to the screen. The winner of the inaugural IWC Schaffhausen Filmmaker Award, selected by a jury chaired by Cate Blanchett, was Maysoon Pachachi’s “Nothing Doing in Baghdad.”

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