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Star-studded awards ceremony unveiled to announce IWC Schaffhausen Filmmaker Award winner..

Thu Nov 22,2012

Dubai, 21 November 2012 – A glittering ceremony for the IWC Schaffhausen Filmmaker Award will host an array of international, regional and emerging artistic talent when it takes place during Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) on 10 December 2012.

Tasked with selecting a winner from this impressive shortlist will be jury members Cate Blanchett, Georges Kern, CEO of IWC Schaffhausen, Abdulhamid Juma, Chairman of DIFF, Masoud Amralla Al Ali, Artistic Director of DIFF, and Olivier Père, General Director of the Paris-based Arte France Cinema. The coveted award will facilitate the development and production of the winning filmmaker’s vision from script to reality.

“We have received so many interesting submissions from the Gulf region. The way they all tell their stories is highly impressive and underlines their tremendous talent. We are delighted to be further developing the creativity and the storytelling skills of one of the finalists in order to contribute to the quality of the regional film business,” says Georges Kern, CEO of IWC.

Leading the line-up will be Academy Award winning jury member Cate Blanchett, who will present the Filmmaker Award on the night.

As an extension of the partnership between luxury Swiss watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen and DIFF, the glamorous event will be hosted at one of the most prestigious destinations in Dubai, the One&Only Royal Mirage. Following the awards ceremony, Bryan Ferry CBE, one of the most legendary singers and songwriters in popular music, will treat audiences to an intimate after-dinner performance. Ferry, who recently celebrated the beginning of his fifth decade in the music business, came to prominence in the early 1970s as lead vocalist and principal songwriter with the band Roxy Music.

Other Friends of the Brand will be in attendance at the Award ceremony to honor the four finalists competing for the IWC Award for Gulf Filmmakers. The four front runners for the award represent a range of diverse talent from across the region; Maysoon Pachachi, a London-based filmmaker of Iraqi origin, who has directed nine documentary films, including the prize-winning Iranian Journey and Bitter Water, is in the running with Nothing Doing in Baghdad. This feature film illustrates the inter-twined nature of human interaction.

First-time director Mohammed Rashed Buali has been shortlisted for his portrayal of a traditional Bahraini family in The Sleeping Tree, which highlights the cultural elements that have been instrumental in maintaining the unique island identity of Bahrain for centuries.

Girls in the Know by Fujairah-born Abdullah Al Kaabi tells an intriguing story of family deception and secrecy. No stranger to DIFF, Al Kaabi’s debut short film The Philosopher was screened for the Muhr Emirati competition in 2010.

The final submission comes from one of the most well-known local film directors Ali F. Mostafa. His character-based film about friends planning a road trip from Abu Dhabi to Beirut, aptly titled From A to B, taps into the comedy genre.

Abdulhamid Juma, Chairman of DIFF said: “I am supremely honoured that we have the opportunity to partner with IWC and deliver on the core objective of DIFF – bringing scripts to screen. The shortlisted finalists are all extremely talented individuals and I wish each of them every success in their future careers. The shortlist selection was not an easy process, as the calibre of submissions received for the award was outstanding, and speaks volumes for the wealth of burgeoning talent across the region. We look forward to our continued collaboration with IWC, as our partnership continues to contribute to the improvement and growth of the regional industry.”

“Friends of the Festival” packages are now available for the upcoming 9th edition of DIFF. Film enthusiasts can select from any of the six exclusive tiers - DIFF Platinum Partner, DIFF Gold Circle, Patron of DIFF, DIFF Supporter, DIFF Genre and DIFF 10 and 25 ticket deals. In return, patrons will receive insider access to the Festival as an acknowledgement of their support for one of the most anticipated events on the UAE’s cultural calendar. For full details on each package and ticket purchases please visit www.dubaifilmfest.com, contact DIFF.Customerservice@filmfest.ae or the call centre 363-3456.

Dubai International Film Festival is media monitored by Media Watch, the leaders in Middle East media monitoring services.

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