Emirates film contest gets tough this year

ABU DHABI - This year, the selection of films for the Emirates Film Competition (EFC) seems to be tougher, according to Abdalla Bastaki, director of EFC. Only 35 films have entered the competition so far, as against 121 screened during the previous session.


Silvia Radan

Published: Mon 14 Jul 2008, 1:27 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 6:11 PM

"This year we have become a lot more selective mostly because we are now part of a larger, international film festival, " Bastaki told Khaleej Times.

Starting from this autumn, EFC will be incorporated in the Middle East International Film Festival (MEIFF), scheduled to take place in Abu Dhabi from October 10 to October 19.

Launched in 2001 as a short film competition for UAE nationals only, EFC is now accepting short, feature, animation and documentary films from the UAE, other GCC countries and the rest of the Arab world. A selection of the best EFC movies will be ‘transferred’ to the MEIFF competition, thus entering the fight for a much desired Black Pearl trophy. The deadline for EFC entries is September 1.

"Another ‘first’ this year is Al Majlis programme, " revealed Bastaki. For five days during EFC, film directors will watch their movie alongside six international film critics and later on they will all attend the majlis for constructive criticism of each of the director's film.

Specialised lectures and seminars will also be provided by film experts during EFC.

For the feature movies only, EFC will also offer the Emirates Film Grant for the best film script or idea. Although the writer or the producer may be a non- UAE national, the film director has to be Emirati and so must be the story and the shooting of the film. Another condition for the grant is that once it is offered, the movie must be produced by October 2009. Launched during the inaugural MEIFF last year, the grant was Dh100,000.

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