Dubai Film Connection Dishes Out Over $115,000 to Arab Filmmakers

DIFF gives $25,000 each to Leyla Bouzid, Ahmed Ibrahim and Ghada Terawi in this year's round of awards.

The Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) organizers dished out over $25,000 to the winners of a series of prizes for projects participating in its Dubai Film Connection (DFC), a co-production market that pairs projects by regional film professionals with international producing and funding bodies.

The awards of over $115,000 represent three Dubai International Film Festival awards of $25,000, as well as cash prizes from international organizations, including French government body Centre National du Cinema et de l’Image Anime, AFTE and the New Century filmmaker award of $10,000 for a filmmaker who aspires to usher in a new and unconventional cinematic vision in the Arab world.

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That prize went to a project named Bastard from Uda Benyamina.

DIFF awards of $25,000 went to Leyla Bouzid's God Protect My Daughter, Ahmed Ibrahim's Kharouf and Ghada Terawi's The Forgotten.

DIFF managing director Shivani Pandya said: "Since the DFC’s inception in 2007, 35 projects have been completed and a further five [are] in various stages of production -- an excellent ratio for any project market, but even more so in an emerging film market where the industry is not mature. We recognized elements that were lacking in our regional industry and designed the DFC to unleash the potential of Arab cinema."

The cash prizes at the DFC aim to give the chosen projects a shot in the arm for production.