Friday, November 25, 2016

The wait will be over soon as the 13th Edition of the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) is about to begin, bringing all movie enthusiasts together under one platform. The 13th edition of DIFF, held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President & Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, disclosed its full line-up of 156 films on 23rd Nov 2016 at a press conference held at Mina A’Salam Hotel in Jumeirah, Dubai.

Press Conference of DIFF at Mina A’Salam Hotel

There are 156 films from 55 different countries. Along with the movie screenings there is a diverse industry programme for filmmakers at the Dubai Film Market (DFM), a strong competition of Special Presentations, Red Carpet Galas as well as exciting community events.

DIFF will commence from 7th December 2016 till 14 December 2016. The festival will showcase non-fiction, short features and short films. It showcases 57 World premieres and 73 MENApremieres whichincludes 12 Middle East premieres and 9 GCC premieres. The festival has separate segments which are dedicated to children, Virtual Reality, Arab world and World cinema.This time around, DIFF also introduces VR films in a section called the 'DIFFerent REALITY'.

DIFF’s Opening Night will be on Wednesday, 7th December and the opening Gala film will be the International Premiere ‘Miss Sloane’, a political thriller directed by John Madden. The film is about a ruthless lobbyist who is notorious for her talent and her desire to win at any cost, which can put her career at risk. The thriller pulls back the curtain on how Capitol Hill games are played and won as Sloane faces off against the most influential powers in D.C.

This yearDIFF curtains will close on another spectacular film. DIFF’s closing Gala Movie is one of the most anticipated movie releases of the year, ‘Rogue one: A Star Wars Story’ directed by Gareth Edwards. The movie is about a group of unlikely heroes who band together on a mission to steal theplans to the Death Star, the Empire's ultimate weapon of destruction. The mission brings together ordinary people who choose to do extraordinary things, and in doing so, become part of something greater than themselves. The movie ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ opens in UAE theatres on December 15, 2016.

Press Conference: (left to right) Partners Emirates Airlines Air Hostess, AbdulhamidJuma, Shivani Pandya, MasoudAmralla Al Ali, partners Emirates Airlines Air Hostess

At the DIFF press conference, Chairman Abdulhamid Juma said, “What amazes me every year about the Festival is its ability to both inspire the community of film lovers and of the ordinary people from around the world, as well as its tangible impact on the region’s film industry and this is evident as we unveil another diverse programme for 2016. We are incredibly proud to be able to say that DIFF makes a valuable contribution to Arab cinema, whether it is by bringing local talent together or by giving practical experiences to the next generation of filmmakers.

For residents and visitors in the UAE, DIFF is a time to celebrate the magic of cinema. People have the chance to hear and see stories from around the region and the world they may never be exposed to through our varied and rich slate of films; to celebrate the most anticipated films of the year at public screenings and interact with their directors in person; and to hear first-hand from legendary international talents that have helped shape the industry. It is incredible to see just how much is achieved in eight days, and that is the true wonder of the Dubai International Film Festival.”

The Managing Director of DIFF, Shivani Pandya said, “This year we have continued to strengthen the Festival’s position as a platform for Arab talent and that work takes place year-round, not just during the Festival itself. One thing I am particularly excited about this year is the launch of the Virtual Reality cinema bringing festival goers the futuristic film experiences in 360 degrees.”

The Artistic Director of DIFF, Masoud Amralla Al Ali said, “Supporting Arab talent is a great platform at DIFF. We are an international festival with an Arab heart. The industry here and the gifted individuals within it impress me year on year and this edition is no exception”

(left to right) Press Conference: Interviewer, Chairman AbdulhamidJuma, Artistic Director MasoudAmralla Al Ali,Managing Director ShivaniPandya

This time at DIFF, the lifetime achievement award will be presented to American film icon Samuel L. Jackson, Bollywood legendary star Rekha and Oscar award-winning composer Gabriel Yared.

With over four decades in the film industry, Jackson has appeared in more than 100 films and has crafted a diverse and successful career in Hollywood. Rekha is recognized as one of the greatest actresses in Hindi cinema with an exciting career crossing overfour decades in the industry. She has appeared in more than 180 films. Gabriel Yared is an internationally acclaimed French-Lebanese composer whose impressive filmography spans three decades.
Other than the lifetime award achievers, many other well-known famous stars will also mark their presence at DIFF;Jeffrey Wright, Luke Hemsworth, Andie MacDowell, Ranveer Singh, Vaani Kapoor, Melanie Griffith, Sharlto Copley, Michael Smiley, Enzo Cilento, Dave Johns and Asif Kapadia, to name a few.

Journalists and Media attending the conference

The films will be screened at different venues for viewers. The venues are Madinat Arena, Souq Madinat Theatre, The Beach – opposite JBR, Mall of the Emirates and The DIFF Forum Room.

There are also student discounts for movie tickets for those students who wish to avail this offer. Ticket prices for these students are AED 15. DIFF also gives its guests travel package offers. Emirates NBD card holders have the added advantage of getting tickets at half price.

Reported by Sharmila Srikrishna
Final Year Print : School of Media and Communciation