Faisal Hashmi, a Dubai-raised expat who has produced 10 short films in as many years, won the inaugural Independent Filmmaker of the Year award.
Hashmi’s recent films made the rounds at several international film festivals especially in the last 12 months. His most recent short movie Wicken was screened at film fests in the US. A few of the film festivals that Hashmi was featured in include the NEPA Horror Film Festival in Scranton, Mesa International Film Festival in Arizona. Wicken also played in Los Angeles at the Skiptown Playhouse Film Festival as part of the horror short films category.
A euphoric Hashmi shared his thoughts after winning, he said: The competition couldn't have been stronger. Shahad Ameen is a rising new talent and her film Scales is one I'm looking forward to seeing and has been making waves on the festival circuit, so it was a genuine surprise to hear my name as the winner. I think the judges might have paid close emphasis to the word 'Independent' in 'Independent Filmmaker of the Year' and seen how all of my work have been micro-budget efforts with me wearing multiple hats to make my films despite the limitations and lack of studio backing, so perhaps I embodied the true spirit of that award.
Hashmi’s story is particularly one of a self-made filmmaker, still in search for a big partnership with a major studio. That, however, hasn’t prevented him from planning his first full length short-film.