Dubai Film Connection Co-Prod Mart Nods

Dubai Film Connection cachet is key to mounting Arab pic productions

DUBAI – A trio of Arab projects with revolutions at their core are the top prizewinners at the 10th Dubai Film Festival’s Dubai Film Connection co-production mart.

The DIFF Award winners are: Tunisian director Leyla Bouzid’s “God Protect My Daughter,” about an 18-year-old girl who joins a politically active music band and discovers freedom and sexuality in Tunis on the eve of the 2010 revolution there; Egyptian director Ahmed Ibrahim’s “Kharouf,” about a man debating leaving Egypt with his wife and unborn son during the country’s ongoing revolutionary turmoil; Palestinian director Ghada Terawi’s “The Forgotten,” in which the Palestinian liberation movement intersects with the Japanese Red Army.

Each of these projects won $25,000 and, perhaps more importantly, the cachet that comes with the Dubai nod.

The DFC’s ARTE prize, worth $6,000, went to Palestinian director Rashid Masharawi’s “Gaza DC,” produced by Tunisia’s Habib Attia. Attia was also among five producers at the Dubai mart selected to attend the Producers Network meetings at Cannes.

DFC topper Jane Williams said the main criteria for selecting projects was their potential appeal to both international and local audiences.

The Dubai Film Festival, which will wrap Dec. 14, is the world’s most prominent Arab film platform and mart.

A complete list of other DFC winners

OIF Prize  – Euros 5,000

Winning Project: “Dangerous Profiles”
Director: Mark Lotfy
Producer: Bassem Maher

Front Row KNCC Award – $ 10,000

Winning Project: “The Flag”
Director: Firas Khoury
Producer: Hany Abu-Assad

CNC Award – Euros 10,000

Winning Project: “Heatwave”
Director: Joyce A. Nashawati
Producer: Fenia Kossovitsa

New Century Filmmaker Award – $ 10,000

Winning Project: “Bastard”
Director: Uda Benyamina
Producer: Marc-Benoit Créancier

Cannes Producers Network Accreditations

Habib Attia (Gaza D.C.)

Abdullah Boushahri (How I Got There)

Bassem Maher (Dangerous Profiles)

Palmyre Badinier (Ahmed in Wonderland)

Silvio Saade (A Reverence for Spiders)

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