AUS shorts head to Cannes

(Staff Reporter)
Filed on May 15, 2012

SHARJAH - Short films by nine students from the American University of Sharjah (AUS) have been accepted into the Short Film Corner at the 65th Cannes Film Festival.

A film by professor Jack Swanstrom from AUS also made the cut making it an even ten films accepted from AUS at the prestigious film festival taking place from May 16 to 26.

Considered a meeting place for professionals from around the world, the Short Film Corner is more of a showcase than a competition, though entries are selected by a committee. Participants can meet prominent filmmakers, exchange ideas in a professional area, promote their films and attend workshops and conferences.

“It’s immensely gratifying to see our first two groups of film minors recognised by organisations as prestigious as the Short Film Corner at the Cannes Film Festival, the Dubai International Film Festival, the Emirates Film Competition and the Abu Dhabi Film Festival,” said professor Jack Swanstrom, whose film Bu Qtair has been accepted into the corner.

Students from the University expressed joy on having their films selected in the Short Film Corner.

“I was thrilled to know that my animated short film is going to be part of this edition of Cannes. Of course this is a great opportunity for me as an animator and filmmaker to have my film seen by an international audience in a great platform like Cannes,” said Mahya Soltani. Her film Sweet and Sour like a Pomegranate, will be showcased at the film corner.

Another student, Mohammed Mamdouh Salaheldin, director of Halfway, said: “Screening at Cannes provides our films a shot at international recognition. It is the first of a series of steps we as filmmakers have to take to establish ourselves in the industry. What we do know is that none of this would be possible without the film minor at AUS, which supported us from pre-production to the final products.”

Other participating AUS students include Ali Monguno with Cold Play, Sarah Alagroobi with The Forbidden Fruit, Maha Dahlan with Grande, Omnia Elafifi with Donia, Hana Kazim with The Final Division, Salma Serry with Dinner #7665 and Najiha Zaimuddin with Autopilot. Two of the selected students are majoring in design and the others hail from the AUS College of Engineering and the AUS School of Business and Management.

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