DIFF signs partnership deal with Beirut DC to promote documentary film-making

Published May 16th, 2010 - 11:25 GMT

Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF), the definitive film festival of the Arab world, Asia and Africa, has signed a strategic partnership with Beirut DC, a Lebanon-based organisation that promotes independent film-making, to strengthen local documentary film-making skills.

DIFF will provide a financial incubating fund of US$10,000 to Beirut DC’s Documentary Course that is aimed at inspiring young film professionals to showcase their skills in documentary making.

The selected project will be presented at Dubai Film Connection, the co-production film market hosted at DIFF 2010, for potential financial and technical support to execute a full-fledged documentary.

Shivani Pandya, Managing Director, DIFF, said that the partnership with Beirut DC is another testament to the strong community outreach of the festival. “One of the founding objectives of DIFF is to promote regional film-making talent. Through collaborations with committed organisations like Beirut DC, we can reach out to the creative community and assist them in realizing their dream.”

She added: “The financial support by DIFF will serve as a starting point for the selected documentary filmmakers in developing a strong project for showcasing at DIFF’s Dubai Film Connection.”

Eliane Raheb of Beirut DC, said: “Beirut DC has been focused on hosting training workshops entitled “Two side of the Coin” for professionals and semi-professionals to encourage documentary filmmaking in the Arab world. The strategic partnership with DIFF will catalyse the documentary film circuit promoted by us. It will make a tangible difference for creative professionals to produce a world-class documentary.” 

As ‘Partner’ in the Documentary Workshop – Two side of the Coin, DIFF will attend the Final Pitching that will take place during the frame work of the Arab Film festival – Cinema Days of Beirut – organized by Beirut DC to select a project for Dubai Film Connection, which offers directors of Levant, Maghreb, Gulf or North African origin more than US$120,000 in prize

money and invaluable industry connections. The co-production market also matches the short-listed director/producer teams with specialists in film production, sales, distribution and funding to further their projects.

Beirut DC will take an active role in promoting the various initiatives of DIFF including the Dubai Film Connection and Dubai Film Market and encourage healthy submissions towards the Muhr Arab programme in particular. They will also suggest a shortlist of participants for the Producer’s Coaching Programme for up-and-coming filmmakers held on the sidelines of DIFF 2010.

DIFF had recently signed a partnership with Royal Film Commission – Jordan (RFC) to promote filmmaking links between the two organisations. The collaboration involves inviting four screenwriter graduates from the Rawi – The Middle East Screenwriters Lab, a programme of the Royal Film Commission-Jordan done in consultation with Sundance Institute – to attend DIFF during the Dubai Film Connection to further develop their projects further and network with industry professionals.

The seventh edition of Dubai International Film Festival 2010 will be held from December 12 to 19, 2010.

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