'Disgrace' tops Middle East film festival

Arijon's 'Stranded' wins documentary competition

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates -- Steve Jacobs' "Disgrace" took home the top prize at the Middle East International Film Festival Black Pearl Awards, which were announced Sunday inside the Emirates Palace during the festival's closing ceremony. The film was named best narrative feature, taking home a $200,000 prize.

Gonzalo Arijon's "Stranded" won best documentary with an award totaling $150,000. The Black Pearl Special Jury Prize of $125,000 was awarded to "Youssou N'Dour: I Bring What I Love," directed by Elisabeth Chai Vasarhelyi.

"Body of Lies," Ridley Scott's controversial film about Jordanian terrorists, made its Middle East premiere, with star Michael Gaston in tow, before guests retired to the glamorous outdoor terrace to bid MEIFF goodbye with a lavish buffet and fireworks display.

The awards, directed and choreographed by Otis Sallid, were the culmination of the 10-day fest that featured 152 films and 186 screenings shown in five Abu Dhabi venues. A total of 76 feature films and 34 short films from over 35 countries competed at MEIFF 2008.
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