UAE to Showcase its Thriving Film Industry and Champion Arab Talent at The 2016 Cannes Film Festival
Thu May 12, 2016

Dubai, UAE: UAE delegation, including Dubai Film and TV Commission (DFTC), Dubai Studio City (DSC), Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) and Sharjah International Children’s Festival, will come together to promote and showcase the UAE film industry and champion Arab talent to the international community. The delegation headed today to the UAE Pavilion at the 69th annual Cannes Film Festival scheduled to be held from 11 to 22 May 2016.

The UAE Pavilion located in the International Village will be the focus for business, information and promoting talent from the region, showcasing the multiple local, Arab, Hollywood and Bollywood productions that were filmed across the Emirates in the past year.

The UAE has witnessed a significant increase in the number of productions who selected it as a filming location for famous productions, including Star Trek Beyond, Kung Fu Yoga, and Shah Rukh Khan’s Happy New Year. This is due to the many advantages that filmmakers enjoy here in the country, including its world class infrastructure, well connected airlines, advanced facilities, particularly DSC’s high-tech Sound Stages, as well as its unique and diverse locations. This is in addition to the availability of talented film professionals, who are keen to provide the needed support ensuring the ease and efficiency of the filming process.

Sheikha Jawaher bint Abdullah Al Qasimi, Director of FUNN and of the Sharjah International Children’s Film Festival, stressed the importance of international participation for the Emirati filmmaking industry.

“This participation highlights the progress made by the motion picture industry in the UAE, its growing experience with film professionals around the world, and its overall aim to enrich the local, regional and international filmmaking landscape,” she said.

She added: “Thanks to the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah and Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Family Affairs, the Sharjah International Children’s Film Festival has turned into a platform for the expansion of the local filmmaking industry by developing a new generation of creative talents and encouraging Emirati filmmakers to produce more movies that address children's issues. We hope to convey this message at the Cannes Film Festival and to filmmaking communities everywhere.”


Commenting, Jamal Al Sharif, Chairman of Dubai Film and TV Commission and Managing Director of Dubai Studio City said:
“Cannes is an excellent opportunity for us to showcase the amazing development of the film industry in the UAE, making us the leading film hub in the region. The UAE has become the go to destination for aspiring filmmakers, big Hollywood and Bollywood productions, not only for its picturesque locations but also because of the world class equipment and sound stages easily available at Dubai Studio City.”

Jamal added: “We also value building relationships with influential players in the filming industry and look to nurture the developing UAE film industry through showcasing and promoting our success at this prestigious event.”

The Cannes Film Festival is the perfect platform for the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) to further support emerging and established Arab filmmakers and continue promoting Arab cinema on the international stage. Alongside a series of networking events at the UAE Pavilion, the Dubai Film Market in partnership with the Marché du Film will present an exclusive screening of four Arab films in post-production amongst the works-in-progress line-up to an audience of sales agents, financiers, festival programmers and distributors. This is an ideal opportunity for international audiences to discover new and compelling stories the Arab world.

In addition, seven films supported by Enjaaz, the Dubai Film Market’s post-production and production support programme and showcased at at DIFF’s 12th edition will present their films in the Cannes Short Film Corner. Joining them is the winning film of the Samsung Short Film Contest, an initiative launched in 2014 to support the aspirations of the UAE’s creative minds under the guidance of Emirati director Nayla Al Khaja.

Abdulhamid Juma, Chairman of the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF), said:

“We are delighted to be flying the UAE flag at the Cannes Film Festival once again this year to champion emerging and world class Arab film makers, connect audiences with films from the region and showcase our growing media and film industry. Cannes is the perfect platform for us to present everything the UAE has to offer the rest of the film world, from world-class facilities and infrastructure, a unique choice of locations, exceptional talent and incredible film festivals putting the spotlight on the very best of Arab and world cinema. We aim to make the UAE Pavilion a destination for festival delegates to explore opportunities working with the UAE and at the same time, we are supporting those from the Arab world going to Cannes so they can connect with the international film industry and maximize opportunities to further elevate Arab cinema and talent on the world stage.”