Finalists for Arab Film Studio’s Short Film Competition named
ABU DHABI - Today Image Nation Abu Dhabi, in partnership with twofour54 tadreeb, announced the six finalists of the first annual Arab Film Studio’s Short Film Competition. The finalists will now participate in a three-month film training program and series of challenges which will culminate with one winner being awarded 50,000 AED to develop a feature screenplay for Image Nation Abu Dhabi.
Image Nation Abu Dhabi launched Arab Film Studio in the fall as part of its mission to identify, train and foster budding Emirati filmmakers and provide them with the discipline and training needed for successful careers in the film industry. The call for entries was announced in early November with contestants asked to submit a brief three-minute video. The entries were then reviewed and contestants interviewed, with six finalists selected.
Mohammed Al Otaiba, Head of Image Nation Abu Dhabi, commented: “We were thrilled with the level of talent we witnessed in the entries for our first annual Short Film Competition. The submissions show there is great potential and promise for filmmaking in the UAE. We are proud to provide an outlet to develop this talent and continue our mission of building a world-class film industry in the UAE.”
The six finalists, who are all UAE Nationals, will create teams with members representing any nationality. Teams will then participate in a three-month intensive film training program to learn all elements of film making from development through production and marketing. Courses will be delivered by film professionals from twofour54 in partnership with the BBC Academy and SAE Institute Dubai. Throughout the program, teams will participate in activities including script writing, make up and sound design with the final task being a short film produced by each team. The short films will be reviewed by a distinguished panel of international judges with one film selected as the overall winner.
This year’s finalists include:
• Eisa Al Sabousi: (age: 21/ residence Abu Dhabi): A graduate from American University of Sharjah with a Bsc. in Communications
• Fatima Al Dhaheri (age:18/ residence: Abu Dhabi): An Intaj student at twofour54 with aspirations to be a professional filmmaker
• Khalid Al Abdulla : (age: 22/ residence: Dubai): A young filmmaker/editor/actor with a degree in media from Dubai Men’s College
• Mariam Khanji: (age: 20/ residence: Abu Dhabi): A student at Zayed University studying visual communication
• Omar Butti: (age: 27/ residence: Dubai): An Emirati/American television presenter/producer and aspiring filmmaker
• Sarah Al Ameri: (age: 17 / residence: Abu Dhabi): A high school senior who aspires to study directing in New York City next year
Wayne Borg, Deputy CEO and Chief Operating Officer, twofour54 commented: “twofour54 is committed to the development of the Arab world’s media and entertainment industry and we are always looking to support initiatives such as Arab Film Studio. The number and quality of entries clearly demonstrates the growing interest that young UAE Nationals have in developing films that tell ‘their story’ and reflect them culturally. twofour54 tadreeb will now provide the finalists with world-class training to further develop the skills they need to succeed in the media industry.”
The winner with be announced this summer, with a call for entries for the second annual competition announced in the fall. For more information please visit: www.arabfilmstudio.ae
About Image Nation
Launched in 2008 as a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi Media, Image Nation has rapidly become one of the world’s leading feature film producers. The company’s mission is to build the foundations of a strong local film industry in the UAE. Image Nation Abu Dhabi, the company’s local division, produced its first Emirati film in 2011 – the coming of age story “Sea Shadow”. The division also oversees a number of training and internship programs designed to encourage the growth of local film talent. Image Nation International, the company’s international film division, maintains strategic partnerships with a number of major producers. These include Participant Media, National Geographic Films, Hyde Park Entertainment, Parkes /Macdonald Productions, Warner Bros., and Singapore’s Media Development Authority (MDA). The division has co-produced a number of feature films, including the Bollywood hit “My Name is Khan”, “Fair Game”, “The Help”, “Contagion” and “The Double”.