A documentary tracking the production of a charity song and music feature, featuring legendary Grammy Award-winning music producer Quincy Jones, is set to stage its world premiere at the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) on December 17.
‘Bokra The Film’, directed by Emirati filmmaker Ahmed Abdulqader and also featuring social entrepreneur Badr Jafar and Emirati director Ali F Mostafa, it traces the development and production of ‘Tomorrow-Bokra’ and includes behind the scenes footage filmed in Morocco and Jordan.
“I am enormously proud that the people of the Middle East and North Africa so warmly embraced the themes expressed in ‘Tomorrow - Bokra’ and I can think of no better place to premiere the film of the making of this historic recording than the Dubai International Film Festival. As with the recording of the ‘Bokra' song and music video, I know that Bokra The Film will continue to prove my belief in the power of music and the arts to bring people together for the betterment of mankind,” said Quincy Jones.
‘Tomorrow-Bokra’, an Arabic re-adaptation of Jones’ Grammy-award winning song ‘Tomorrow (A Better You, A Better Me)’, was released in November 2011 debuting at number 1 on the charts and went on to become one of the fastest selling Arab songs of all time viewed over 11 million times on You Tube.
The charity single featured 24 of the region’s top artists from 16 nations across the Middle East and North Africa singing with one voice for a better tomorrow, including Majida El Roumi, Kadim Al Saher, Marwan Khoury, Sherine Abdel Wahab, Tamer Hosny, Saber Rebai, Latifa, Fayez Al Saeed and many more. International superstar Akon also lent his vocals to the track while Shakira, who is of Lebanese descent, recorded a special introduction to the music video.
All proceeds from the song were donated to various charities and initiatives that were targeted to towards the regions youth; with a special focus on developing culture and arts. The beneficiaries included the World Food Programme, Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation and Save the Children’s innovative HEART program, which stands for Healing and Education through the arts.
The film highlights HEART following its development into a programme that gives children an outlet for expression through art. To date HEART has supported 33 schools, 90 teachers and 4,000 children throughout Jordan and Palestine.
“It is an honour for Bokra The Film to make its debut in my home of the UAE and at such an influential platform for the regional film industry. It is my hope that by showcasing the positive influence music and film can have on disadvantaged youth that more people will unite in the power of the arts to truly make a difference,” said director Ahmed Abdulqader on his debut feature.
“I have been close to the ‘Tomorrow-Bokra’ project since it was just an idea. To see what it has achieved from the very beginning is incredible, and I knew when Badr asked my thoughts on producing a documentary about the importance of art, that it was the ideal subject. It has been an honor working with the talented debutant Emirati filmmaker Ahmed Abdulqader, in bringing Bokra The Film to its world premiere at our beloved Dubai International Film Festival,” said Emirati director Ali F Mostafa.