The legacy of renowned Egyptian actor Omar Sharif will be celebrated at the 12th edition of the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) this December through the world premiere screening of his last film, ‘1001 Inventions and the World of Ibn Al-Haytham’.
Sharif, whose passing in July saddened the world of film and beyond, came out of retirement to support the short film from award-winning director and producer Ahmed Salim, which will be screened twice at this year’s DIFF. It forms the final part of the 15-strong line-up of films in the Muhr Gulf Shorts category at the festival.
The UK and UAE co-produced film focuses on the scientific journey of 11th Century Arab polymath and philosopher Ibn Al-Haytham. It follows his journey to discover the nature of light and vision, which helped set the foundation for modern science and named him the father of experimental physics, modern optics and scientific methodology, as well as a grandfather of the camera obscura – the device that forms the basis of photography and cinematography.
Taking the lead role in the short film, Sharif guides younger audiences through a partly animated story-line of Ibn Al-Haytham’s journey into understanding vision.
DIFF’s artistic director, Masoud Amralla Al Ali, commented: “We were deeply saddened by the passing of Omar Sharif, whose career and life has left a lasting impact on the film industry and beyond. DIFF awarded Omar Sharif with the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award during the first edition in 2004, and today with his great strides in Arab cinema it is very fitting that we honour his last film in the Muhr Gulf Short Film category, which we strive to ensure showcases the best talent and ingenuity from across the region and to the wider cinematic world.”
The film is officially endorsed by the United Nations proclaimed “International Year of Light” and will be part of an Ibn Al-Haytham global campaign - led by Ahmed Salim in partnership with UNESCO and 1001 Inventions - which includes exhibits, books, live shows and learning materials.
You can watch the trailer for ‘1001 Inventions and the World of Ibn Al-Haytham’ below...