The Doha Film Institute (DFI) has selected 38 projects by emerging and established Qatari and international directors, including Mena directors from over 15 countries for its Fall 2018 Grants programme. For the first time, DFI grants are also being awarded for TV and web series helmed by Mena scriptwriters and directors, with two projects supported in each category.
“By elevating original voices in cinema, promoting creative interaction and providing creative support throughout the filmmaking cycle, we intend to establish a robust film ecosystem in the Arab world,” said DFI CEO Fatma Hassan Alremaihi.
Of the 38 projects selected, three are by Qatari filmmakers – for two short narratives and one feature documentary. In all, 18 women filmmakers will receive the grants this cycle. There are also five returning filmmakers who will receive the grants, highlighting the Institute’s commitment to long-term relationships. Marking DFI’s commitment to support powerful projects by established filmmaker, in this cycle, a new film project by Nacer Khemir has beee selected for the grants.
To The Ends of The Earth
As the Palestine Film Unit marks its 50th anniversary, six selected Palestinian projects demonstrate the industry to be as prolific as ever. Lebanon is also strongly represented with seven grantees while projects from Mexico, Lesotho and Russia have been awarded for the first time. Grants are also awarded to filmmakers from Afghanistan, Algeria, Bolivia, Iran, Jordan, Kuwait, Morocco, Serbia, Sudan, and Tunisia.
The DFI Fall 2018 Grants programme saw the highest number of applications at 467 this cycle, including 150 applications from non-Mena countries. Eight non-Mena post production projects have been awarded this cycle – a record number – and eight experimental or essay projects by Mena and non-Mena filmmakers have also been selected.
The films chosen for development grants are: Feature Narrative - Beirut 1931 (Palestine, Qatar) by Kamal Aljafari; In Vitro (Palestine, Switzerland, France, Denmark, Qatar), the first feature by Larissa Sansour; Mama, Where Are You? (Kuwait, France, Qatar) by Meqdad Al-Kout; Where Did I Leave My Face? (Palestine, France, Germany, Qatar) by Ramzi Maqdisi.
Feature Documentary: Femmetasia (Morocco, Belgium, Qatar) by Mouhssine El Badaoui; You Don't Die Two Times (Algeria, Qatar) by Ager Oueslati.
TV Series - TCA186: The Tarmac Year (Lebanon, Qatar) by Mohamed Berro; The Vibes (Tunisia, Switzerland, Qatar) by Erige Sehiri.
The winners of the DFI Fall 2018 Grants for projects in the production stage are:
Feature Narrative - Barzakh (working title – Palestine/Germany/Qatar) by Laila Abbas; Costa Brava Lebanon (Lebanon, France, Sweden, Norway, Qatar) by Mounia Akl; Happy Holidays (Palestine, Germany, France, Qatar) by Scandar Copti; Mediterranean Fever (Palestine, France, Qatar) by Maha Haj; Severed Head (Tunisia, France, Qatar) by Lotfi Achour; The Alleys (Jordan, France, Qatar) by Bassel Ghandour.
Feature Experimental or Essay: It’s Far Away Where I Must Go (Morocco, Belgium, Qatar) by Karima Saidi about Aicha; The Dam (Lebanon, France, Qatar) by Ali Cherri; The Earth Doesn't Move (Tunisia, France, Italy, Qatar) by Yosr Gasmi. Feature Documentary: We Are Inside (Lebanon, Qatar) by Farah Kassem.
Web Series: Zyara (Lebanon, Qatar) by Muriel Aboulrouss; The Closet Sessions (Jordan, Qatar) by Ahmad Satti Ibrahim.
Short Narrative: Al-Sit (Sudan, Qatar) by Suzannah Mirghani; Border (Qatar) by Khalifa al-Thani; The Bath (Tunisia, France, Qatar) by Anissa Daoud; The Bystander (Lebanon, Qatar) by Rachel Aoun.
Short Experimental: This Haunting Memory That Is Not My Own (Lebanon, Germany, Qatar) by Panos Aprahamian.
The film projects in post-production stage chosen for the Grants are:
Feature Narrative - Sanctorum (Mexico, Qatar) by Joshua Gil; Sirena (Bolivia, Qatar) by Carlos Piñeiro.
Feature Documentary: Froth (Russia, Qatar) by Ilia Povolotskiy; Loving Wallada (Tunisia, Qatar) by the established filmmaker Nacer Khemir: Movement (Morocco, Lebanon, Qatar) by Nadir Bouhmouch: The Forbidden Strings (Afghanistan, Iran, Qatar) by Hasan Noori; The Marriage Project (Iran, France, Qatar) by Atieh Attarzadeh and Hesam Eslami; The Waiting Bench (Sudan, France, Germany, Chad, Qatar) by Suhaib Gasmelbari.
Feature Experimental or Essay: Mother, I Am Suffocating. This Is My Last Film About You. (Lesotho, Germany, Qatar) by Lemohang Jeremiah Mosese; Speak So I Can See You (Serbia, Croatia, Qatar) by Marija Stojnic; To The Ends Of The Earth (Qatar) by Hamida Issa; What We Left Unfinished (Afghanistan, US, Qatar) by Mariam Ghani.
Short Narrative: Me, Myself, and A I (Qatar) by Maha al-Jefairi.