Sunday, April 8, 2012

Manipal Dubai Media student, Nikita Arora interviewing  director of Tora Bora, Walid Al Awadi
Photo by Anzuma Akther
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The 5th Edition of the Gulf Film Festival commences on the 10th of April at Grand Cinemas Dubai Festival City, with the screening of a Kuwaiti feature film Tora Bora, directed by Walid Al Awadi. 

Participating for the first time at the Gulf Film Festival, he said, “I’m honored by the international and local recognition my film has gained and it’s leading to great expectations.”

Watch the trailer of Tora Bora, directed by Walid Al Awadi, 
A story of a young man who decides to join extremists in Afghanistan, and his parents' journey to find him

Tora Bora, a 102 minutes feature film that portrays the plight of the parents who embarked on a journey to Afghanistan, to get their son back who was brainwashed by extremists to leave Kuwait for Afghanistan. 

Walid Al Awadi, an award-winning producer and film-maker from Kuwait said, “I am always inspired by true stories and this family’s story in Tora Bora inspired me a lot, who went all the way to get their son back home. The fight which the parents undertake was a challenge for them and portraying those emotions effectively as a film-maker, which the audience can relate to is a challenge in itself.” 

He also comments on the issue of extremists in religion, “These people [extremists] portray themselves as if they are fighting for the religion, when they really are just hijacking it rather than helping to bring a change.”

In 1991, Walid Al Awadi has worked as a site manager with German film-maker, Werner Herzog who received a lifetime achievement award at the Dubai International Film Festival this year. He describes his first experience as a student on the sets of a Werner Herzog film as a ‘nightmare’, in the sense that he got this opportunity to work with such a renowned director and he said, “It was wonderful working with him, I learned a lot being on the sets.”

Walid Al Awadi’s Tora Bora is making its international premiere at the Gulf film festival and is competing in the Gulf’s feature competition alongside six shortlisted Kuwaiti films.

Stay tuned for more! 

By Qudsiya Siddiqui