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The Abu Dhabi Film Festival will kick off its upcoming eighth edition with Emirati director Ali F. Mostafa’s hotly anticipated pan-Arab road movie “From A to B” and close with the Middle East launch of Disney’s “Big Hero 6” (pictured).

“A to B,” which is about three Western-edicated youths who travel from Abu Dhabi to Beirut to mourn a deceased friend, marks the first time the fest opens with a pic by an Emirati helmer. Pic is co-produced by two government-backed entities, twofour54, the media hub behind the fest, and production and distribution outfit Imagenation.

“We are delighted to feature a locally produced film as opening title of this year’s festival,” enthused ADFF director Ali Al Jabri in a statement.

“The sucess of high-calibre Arab filmmakers like Ali Mostafa is a testament to the vibracy of filmmaking in the region,” he added.

“A to B” follows Mostafa’s debut feature “City of Life,” which depicted contempo life in the neighboring Emirati city of Dubai and had its world premiere at the Dubai International Film Festival in 2009 before having a good run at the local box office.

Since then Abu Dhabi’s film scene has grown to rival Dubai, recently luring major international productions including “Star Wars: Episode VII” and “Fast and Furious 7.”

The Abu Dhabi Film Festival will focus on film industry growth in the region by showcasing the best available fresh Arab pics alongside a selection of cherry-picked international fest titles. Fest will run Oct. 23-Nov. 1. lineup will be revealed on September 29.