Canon executives with UAE filmmaker Nayla Al Khaja
Canon Middle East, leader in imaging solutions, has named Nayla Al Khaja, the UAE’s first woman film producer, as Canon Brand Ambassador. Canon Middle East officially signed a contract with Nayla Al Khaja today to announce the strategic partnership, during a press conference held under the theme ‘Reel Dreams. Realized’. The press conference was held under the patronage of the UAE Ministry of Culture, Youth & Community Development.
Canon also announced that it will support the “BLOOM! Cine Startups” initiative, which is being organised by Nayla's company D-SEVEN Motion Pictures to encourage budding filmmakers, especially the youth, to make their first film using Canon DSLR cameras. The ‘BLOOM! Cine Startups’ initiative is also supported by TECOM Investments’ Media Cluster. Through her film workshops, Nayla will provide her expertise to participants by demonstrating the key advantages of the Canon DSLR (Digital Single-Lens Reflex) camera, particularly its user-friendly and cost-saving features when used in digital filmmaking. It was further revealed that Canon will support Nayla's upcoming film workshop with Ali Mostafa, which is designed to develop the professional filmmaking industry in the UAE.
Mohammad Abdullah, Managing Director, TECOM Investments’ Media Cluster, said: “Talent is a crucial element in developing the regional media sector and the BLOOM! Cine Startups initiative provides a platform to encourage the growth of an indigenous film industry. We believe initiatives such as these play a crucial role in attracting and nurturing young creative minds in the Arab world. More importantly, it enables emerging as well as professional filmmakers to sharpen their creative skills and bring them on par with other industries worldwide.”
Nayla has already produced and directed four films - Unveiling Dubai, Arabana, Once and Malal – which have won her several international awards, including the Golden Muhr for Malal at the 2010 Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF). She first shot to fame following the release of her debut film, Unveiling Dubai, which earned her international attention from prominent media organisations such as the Washington Post, NHK and BBC World for being the first UAE national woman to embark on a career in filmmaking.
Anurag Agrawal, Managing Director, Canon Middle East, said: "Nayla is an iconic figure that represents class, excellence, creativity and innovation in the Middle East filmmaking industry, the same qualities that have helped maintain Canon's reputation as the global leader in imaging solutions. We are therefore excited with this partnership, which I believe is a powerful tool towards inspiring more creative content in the region's independent filmmaking domain. Canon is pleased to promote the works of Nayla and to support her creative endeavours that serve as inspiration to the younger generation. It is likewise our pleasure to support all independent filmmakers by providing them with unprecedented possibilities in the filmmaking craft through Canon's budget-friendly, full-featured DSLR cameras."
Nayla Al Khaja, Founder and CEO, D-SEVEN Motion Pictures, said: "It is a great honour to be named as brand ambassador of such a prestigious global company. Being a pioneer in DSLR technology and a highly respected name in the motion picture industry, Canon's support to our projects such as the BLOOM! Cine Startups will definitely deliver a tremendous boost towards the development of independent filmmaking in the UAE and in the Arab World."
BLOOM! Cine Startups caters to independent filmmakers who need to produce high-end films for the best possible price. The initiative aims to create major benefits via a long-term relationship with filmmakers, discovering new talent, and promoting budding filmmakers in the UAE.
The DSLR technology pioneered by Canon has changed the motion picture industry and has made it possible for the average person to shoot video with a tight budget. Moreover, Canon's DSLR cameras have contributed to greater mobility for filmmakers as the low-light capabilities in the cameras mean that less power and lights are required, which translates to a significant cutback in equipment to be packed. In cases where traditional electrical lighting is required, filmmakers can use small LED lights that easily fit in the camera bag. In addition, by using Canon DSLR cameras, independent filmmakers will only need a smaller crew when producing a film.
Another advantage of going digital is that filmmakers can see their footage right away without having to wait for the film to be developed. With the advent of the 32gb and 64gb cards, filmmakers can get by with using only one or two cards a day, as compared to stocking several reels of film.
Canon's growth strategy is focused on aggressive investment in R&D, which has enabled the company to maintain its reputation as the innovative global leader in imaging solutions. The company's sustained R&D program has also allowed Canon to develop and introduce a wide array of technology solutions, incorporating new product features and specifications that meet the customers' changing needs.