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A total of $830,000 in cash prizes and $126,000 in-kind prizes were awarded to Saudi, Arab and African projects in the development and work-in-progress stages, during the award ceremony of the second edition of the Red Sea Souk, held during the Red Sea Film Festival.

Top winners included the Saudi comedy drama “Scapegoat,” in development, directed by Feras Almusharrie, produced by Razan Alsoghayer and written by Taqwa Ali, which won the $100,000 Red Sea Souk Production Award for a Saudi Lodge Project and also the Cinewaves Films award in the form of a $50,000 minimum guarantee for acquisition of Arab World distribution rights.

Egyptian drama “Aisha Can’t Fly Away Anymore,” in development, the debut feature by Orad Mostafa and produced by Sawsan Yusuf, won the $100,000 Red Sea Souk Production Award for an Arab Lodge Project.

Ghanaian-French coming-of-age drama “Vagabonds,” in rough-cut, by Ghanaian-American writer/director Amartei Armar and produced by Sébastien Hussenot and Yemoh Ike, won the Red Sea Souk Production Award with a $100,000 cash prize.

Mohammed Al Turki, CEO of the Red Sea Film Festival Foundation, commented during the award ceremony that “the film industry has been very receptive to working with us, it’s crucial to continue to do so to make sure our sector flourishes and grows.”

RED SEA FUND:
$100,000 Red Sea Souk Production Award (Saudi Lodge Project)

“Scapegoat” – Saudi comedy drama by Feras Almusharrie

$100,000 Red Sea Souk Production Award (Arab Lodge Project)

“Aisha Can’t Fly Away Anymore” – Egyptian drama by Orad Mostafa

$100,000 Red Sea Souk Production Award

“Vagabonds” – Ghanaian-French coming-of-age drama by Amartei Armar

$35,000 Red Sea Souk Jury Development Award (Souk project)

“Trip to Jerusalem” – French-Lebanese dark comedy by Gaby and Michel Zarazir

$30,000 Red Sea Souk Post-Production Award (Souk project)

“The Mother of All Lies” (Morocco, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt) by Asmae El Moudir

SPONSOR AWARDS

ARAB CINEMA CENTER (ACC)

Participation in the 2023 Rotterdam Lab

Saudi Project – “You Were the Poet and I Thought I Existed” – drama by Sara Mesfer

Arab Project – “Trip to Jerusalem” – French-Lebanese dark comedy by Gaby and Michel Zarazir

ARAB RADIO AND TELEVISION NETWORK

Two $50,000 prizes for acquisition of Arab region distribution rights

Saudi project – “You Were the Poet and I Thought I Existed” – drama by Sara Mesfer

Arab project – “Bubblegum Brigades” – Lebanese dark comedy by Samah El Kadi

CINEWAVES FILMS

$50,000 minimum guarantee for acquisition of Arab World distribution rights.

“Scapegoat” – Saudi comedy drama by Feras Almusharrie

LEYTH PRODUCTION

In-kind award for a Work-in-Progress film for sound mixing in Auditorium 7.1, equivalent to $20,000.

“Banel e Adama” – French Senagelese drama by Ramata-Toulaye Sy

In-kind award for a Work-In-Progress film for editing with Avid Nitris DX editing system equivalent to 50,000 USD.

“Concrete Land” – Jordanian documentary by Asmahan Bkerat

MAD SOLUTIONS

Acquisition of Arab World distribution rights, $50,000

“Behind the Palm Trees” – French-Moroccan drama by Meryem Benm’barek

MBC ACADEMY/SHAHID

Acquisition of Arab World distribution rights for three projects:

$120,000 for a Saudi project in development or production.

“A Last Argument Against Youth” – Saudi coming-of-age drama by Mohammed Algbreen

$70,000 for a Saudi project in development or production.

“Dancing on Fire” – Saudi romance drama by Hana Al-Omair

$40,000 for an Arab project in development, production, or post-production.

“Men in the Sun” – crime thriller (Greece, Palestine, U.K., the Netherlands, Denmark) by Mahdi Fleifel

OTICONS

Three in-kind awards to be granted by Oticons, consisting of the following:

Original Film Score worth $10,000 for a Work-in-Progress film.

“Younen” – Syrian/German drama by Ameer Fakher Eldin

Music License and Supervision worth $6,000 for a Work-in-Progress film.

“The Mother of All Lies” (Morocco, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt) by Asmae El Moudir

Music Consulting worth $2,000 for a Red Sea Souk Project

“Behind the Palm Trees” – French-Moroccan drama by Meryem Benm’barek

THE CELL STUDIOS

Two promotion packages worth $12,000 each, awarded to two different Work-in-Progress films.

“Concrete Land” – Jordanian documentary by Asmahan Bkerat

“The Burdened” – Yemeni drama by Amr Gamal

– Full DCP package worth $8,000 to one Work-in-Progress film.

“Hounds” – French-Moroccan drama by Kamal Lazraq

TITRAFILM

Subtitling, DCP, or broadcasting worth $6,000 for either a Project Market or a Work-in-Progress film.

“Banel e Adama” – French Senagelese drama by Ramata-Toulaye Sy

A total of 23 projects were pitched during the two development competitions – the Red Sea Lodge and Red Sea Souk sections – and six films screened in the Work in Progress competition.

The Project Market jury was comprised by Belgian producer/director Aurélien Bodinaux, Tunisian producer Habib Attia and Jordanian producer Rula Nasser.

The WIP jury members were Locarno’s artistic director Giona A. Nazzaro, French director Houda Benyamina, and Moroccan helmer Yasmine Benkiran.