Dubai International Film Festival Calls for Entries to Muhr Awards

Sat Aug 11,2007

Films Must be Submitted by August 31, 2007

Dubai: 11 August, 2007– Arab filmmakers are invited to submit their short films, documentaries and features to the Dubai International Film Festival’s (DIFF) second annual Muhr Awards for Excellence in Arab Cinema by August 31, 2007. The competition honours the work of Arab filmmakers in the feature, documentary and short film categories.

The Muhr Awards represents an important part of the festival’s strategy to develop and support the Arab film industry, with highly competitive awards nearing a cumulative AED 1.2 million (US$ 325,000) in prize money.

In 2006, the gold Muhr and close to AED 185,000 (US$ 50,000) went to Algerian filmmaker Jamila Sahrawi’s feature Barakat. The silver prize (USD 40,000) went to the film Falafel by Michel Kammoun from Lebanon, and Bronze (USD 30,000) went to Hakim Belabbes for Why O’Sea? The awards were presented in the presence of Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al Maktoum, Director of the Civil Aviation Authority and President of Emirates Group, as well as film luminaries from around the world.

Masoud Amralla Al Ali, Artistic Director for Arab Programming and Coordinator General for the Muhr Awards stated: “the Muhr Awards is an important platform for Arab film makers to have their work seen by international industry leaders. We at DIFF are dedicated to the creative expression of Arab tradition and culture, and are committed to developing the region’s film industry. Incentives such as these provide artists with not only the means, but the recognition they need to grow.

“We were thrilled with the overwhelming response last year, and are confident of the programme’s continuing success. We wish creative minds from across the Arab world and beyond the very best for this year’s season,” he continued.

All entries for the Muhr Awards are reviewed by a top judging panel from the international and Arab film community.

Last year’s competition drew over 250 entries from around the Arab world, as well as Europe and North America. The competition is open to filmmakers of Arab nationality or descent. The subject and storyline of the film must deal with Arab history, culture, or issues concerning the Arabic community.

Films must be produced after September 1, 2006 and submitted to DIFF before August 31, 2007. The film should not have been screened in the UAE for any audiences before December 17, 2007, with the exception of films that participated in Emirates Film Competition (EFC) in 2007, and should not previously have been shown on any television channel nor streamed via the internet to any public audience.

Films not selected for the Muhr Awards may still be screened in DIFF’s Out of Competition Arabian Nights or Emerging Emiratis program, as applicable.

Detailed competition criteria and entry forms for DIFF 2007 are available on, the official website of the Dubai International Film Festival. The 2007 edition will run from December 9 to 16.

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