Organisers have confirmed this year’s Middle East International Film Festival will be staged at Abu Dhabi’s Emirates Palace from October 8-17.
The third instalment of the annual event will also feature a number of new initiatives, which organiser Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (ADACH) plans to reveal over the coming months.
Filmmakers will be invited to submit entries for competition in May, following an official press conference to be staged at Cannes Film Festival the same month.
Last year’s event, which featured 182 screenings in five venues located across the emirate, was hailed as a major success by event organisers.
ADACH has confirmed that several initiatives launched at the event, including the Arab film focused Research Circle and MEIFF Book Conferences, will return this year.
The Research Circle hosted a number of industry experts who presented findings on the current state of the Middle East film production industry. MEIFF also commissioned four books to be written about the local film industry, two of which were translated from English to Arabic.
The Black Pearl Awards, which offered total prize money in excess of $1 million in 2008, are also expected to return this year.
Last year’s programme recognised filmmakers across various categories including fiction, documentary and shorts.
The Steve Jacobs-directed Australian-South African coproduction Disgrace picked up the best narrative award, with the filmmaker receiving US$200,000 for his efforts.