The fourth Gulf Film Festival will screen three films on India in Dubai from April 14 to 20, underscoring the broader mandate of the festival to bring contemporary cinema from around the world to promote intercultural dialogue and industry interaction.
In all, the Festival, the home of bold, experimental and contemporary cinema from the Gulf nations, Iraq and Yemen, will screen 153 films from 31 countries free to the public in Dubai from Thursday (April 14, 2011) – including 114 films that provide a rare and authentic glimpse into the Arabian peninsula. The 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), will open on Thursday night.
The UAE-UK-India production Love Arranged is a documentary directed by Dubai-based filmmaker Soniya Kirpalani, who won the Muhr Award for Best Documentary at DIFF 2010 with her Dobuy – the Fabric of Faith. The film, which makes its World Premiere in Dubai, explores the retro-trend among Indian youth to seek love the traditional way, and was a Greek Doc Lab nominee, and winner at the WIPS Asian American International Film Festival. It also entered the IWART 2011, Tartu Film Festival and Birds Eye Film Festival London.
Two films from India are competing in Festival’s inaugural International Shorts competition, shortlisted from several dozen films submitted by Indian filmmakers.
Director Abhay Kumar’s Just That Sort of a Day follows seemingly random characters as they go about their day-to-day activities with their quirks, doubts and misgivings, all looking for just one thing – a meaning to their lives. Six Strands, directed by Chaitanya Tamhane, is partially based on true stories, and is a character study inspired by the renowned Darjeeling tea industry and its undisclosed secrets. Both films are making their Middle East premiere at GFF.
Masoud Amralla Al Ali, Festival Director, said: “India offers one of the most varied and vivid cinema experiences. While historically, the Arab world has followed the Hindi film industry, through the Gulf Film Festival’s International Shorts competition and Intersections segment at GFF, we are bringing a slice of Indian cinema seldom screened in Dubai. The three films, one of them a UAE joint production, also underscore the close collaborations fostered by film professionals in the UAE and India.”
The Gulf Film Festival is the home of bold, experimental and contemporary cinema from the Arabian peninsula, and the fourth edition will be held at the InterContinental Hotel, Crowne Plaza, and Grand Cinemas at Dubai Festival City. The 2011 Festival includes out-of-competition segments, a master class by renowned director Abbas Kiarostami and other special events. All films are free and open to the public.