The fourth edition of the Gulf Film Festival, held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Majid Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), opened with a glittering red carpet gala attended by a bevy of Arab celebrities.
His Highness Sheikh Mansoor Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum graced the opening ceremony attended by His Excellency Mohammed Al Murr, Vice Chairman of the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority, Gulf Film Festival Chairman Abdulhamid Juma, Festival Director Masoud Amralla Al Ali, and other dignitaries.
Among the celebrities who walked the red carpet held at Grand Cinemas, Dubai Festival City, include: Kuwaiti talent Abdulrahman Al Aqel, Ahlam Jaafar, Ibrahim Saad AlHarbi, Mohammed Al Mansour, Mohammed Almunai, Abeir Sayed Ahmed, Mahmoud Ali, Mohammed Al Shammari, Tareq Ali and Salah Abdulla Al Mulla; Bahraini talent Yousif Khalifa AlMehaiza, Abdulla Abdulmalek Ahmed, Latifa Abdullah Mejren Alkuwary, Ahmed Yaqoob Almuqla and Haifa Hussain Yosaif; Qatari talent Najwa Mohd Ali Ismaeel and Abdul Aziz Al Jasim; and Saudi talent Shaima Mohd Sabt.
At the opening ceremony, GFF 2011 honoured three individuals who have contributed to the growth and evolution of Arab cinema: Emirati actress Mariam Sultan, Saudi director/producer Mohammad F. Gazzaz, and Kuwaiti producer/director Mohammad Al-Sanousi.
The home of bold, experimental, and contemporary cinema from the Arabian peninsula, flagged off with the screening of the Iraqi documentary Child of Iraq (Barn Af Irak), directed by Ala’A Mohsen. Some 153 films from 31 countries, including 45 from the UAE, are being screened at the festival until April 20, all open and free for the public.
The Festival includes a Gulf competition for professional filmmakers, student competition, out-of-competition segments including children’s cinema, In Focus segment featuring Gérard Courant; a master class by renowned director Abbas Kiarostami; spirited industry discussions featuring filmmakers at ‘Gulf Nights’ every night, and other special events.
GFF 2011 is being held at the InterContinental Hotel, Crowne Plaza and Grand Cinemas at Dubai Festival City. The Gulf Film Festival is supported by Dubai Culture & Arts Authority and is held in association with Dubai Studio City.
The Gulf Film Festival box office is open from 10.30 am to 10 pm daily at the Grand Cinemas Dubai Festival City. All patrons are welcome to up to two tickets per person on a first-come, first-served basis. The full schedule  of films is also available online.