Total of 20 films supported in 2011; 14 Enjaaz films in 8th DIFF lineup
Dubai, UAE; December 12, 2011: The eighth Dubai International Film Festival, held under the patronage
of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President & Prime Minister and
Ruler of Dubai, has selected five additional films from the Arab world to receive post-production funding
as part of the second cycle of its Enjaaz post-production support programme for 2011. This takes the
total number of films from the region to receive the post-production support of DIFF this year to 20.
An integral part of DIFF’s comprehensive script-to-screen initiative, the Dubai Film Market, Enjaaz
provides post-production support of up to US$100,000 per project to help Arab and Arab-origin
filmmakers bridge the gap between production and a screen-ready product.
The five additional projects, comprising documentaries and feature films, are from the UAE, Egypt,
Morocco, Algeria, France, Lebanon and Palestine. They were selected from more than 110 entries, and
The Infiltrators by Palestinian director Khaled Jarar - a documentary that unravels the attempts
of soldiers to crossover to the other side – some of which are successful, and some end in
A co-production of UAE and Lebanon 39 Seconds by Lara Saba questions whether our destiny is
pre-determined or can be altered by the decisions we make. The narrative is described through
the story of various individuals, whose lives seem to change in less than 39 seconds.
10 Years, an Egyptian and UAE co-production by filmmaker Mahmood Soliman, began circa
2002, following an Egyptian woman who sharpened knives on the street to make ends meet.
Despite her hardships, she was determined to ensure that her children do not undergo the
suffering that she did. Soliman returns 10 years later to see how things have changed since
Morocco and France co-production My Brother by Kamal El Mahouti confronts the dilemma
of an artist caught between the two countries and is set against the backdrop of the rhythmic
Gnawa folk music. Moroccan immigrant Mo Bensalah’s very essence is visible in his art, with his
internal voice and feelings guiding viewers to the core of his identity crisis.
A co-production of Algeria, France and UAE, Ouardia Once Had Sons by director Djamila
Sahraoui narrates the story of Ouardia, who has buried her son, a soldier possibly killed by his
own brother, in the isolated Algerian countryside. In this setting tense with pain and brittle with
drought, life will reassert itself.
Fourteen Enjaaz films from the 2010 and 2011 funding cycles are screening in DIFF 2011, including:
Christina Foerch Saab’s Che Guevara Died in Lebanon; Wissam Charaf’s It’s All in Lebanon; Youcef Joe
Bou Edi’s Heels of War; Danielle Arbid’s Beirut Hotel; Daniel Joseph’s Taxi Ballad; Simon El-Habre’s Gate
#5; Narjiss Nejjar’s The Rif Lover; Nadim Mishlawi’s Sector Zero; Yahya AlAbdallah’s The Last Friday;
Laith Al-Juneidi’s The Invisible Policeman; Aseel Mansour’s Uncle Nashaat; Ahmad Rashwan’s Born on
the 25th of January; Rami Nihawi’s Yamo and Susan Youssef’s romantic interlude Habibi Rasak Kharban.
Shivani Pandya, Managing Director, Dubai International Film Festival, said: “Post-production is one of
the critical phases, where filmmakers clearly benefit from additional support that not only enables the
timely completion of their project but also helps them to bring the desired quality. We are delighted
that earlier Enjaaz supported projects are now screening at DIFF, and the new selection of projects will
further help in creating a new and vibrant roster of Arabic films.”
Launched in 2009, the Festival’s Enjaaz programme has supported more than 30 Arab and Arab-origin
films including Egyptian inner city drama Cairo Exit, UAE heritage biopic Hamama, and Iraqi feature
Leaving Baghdad, among others. The deadline for submissions for the next cycle of Enjaaz is February 1,
The DIFF box office is open at www.dubaifilmfest.com. Additional information is also available through
the Festival’s dedicated customer care number, 363 FILM (3456).
The Investment Corporation of Dubai is the title sponsor of the Dubai International Film Festival.
The eighth edition of DIFF is held in association with Dubai Studio City. Dubai Duty Free, Dubai Pearl,
Emirates Airline and Madinat Jumeirah, home to the Dubai International Film Festival, are the principal
sponsors of DIFF. The Festival is supported by the Dubai Culture & Arts Authority. For more and updated
information about DIFF, please visit www.dubaifilmfest.com or join DIFF on