Dubai fest partners with Scorsese's WCF

Foundation is restoring 1981 music doc 'Transes'

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CANNES -- Middle Eastern cinema is getting a makeover as the Dubai International Film Festival on Monday unveiled a partnership with Martin Scorsese's World Cinema Foundation.

Founded in 2007, the WCF is devoted to the preservation and restoration of non-Hollywood cinematic masterpieces.

The foundation's first step in protecting Middle Eastern film heritage is the restoration of Moroccan filmmaker Ahmed al Maanouni's 1981 musical documentary "Transes."

"Arab film has a pedigree that dates back a century, and older cinema works must be preserved to enable younger generations to see what this region is capable of and to inspire us to continue to develop," DIFF artistic director Masoud Amralia said.

The sixth edition of DIFF runs Dec. 9-16 in Dubai.