Nayla Al Khaja, Emirati filmmaker and CEO of Nayla Al Khaja Films, launched a new Creative Studio in Dubai on May 8, at an event attended my prominent regional film industry and media persons. In addition, Al Khaja will attend the Producers Network during the Cannes International Film Market and will pitch for her first feature film project, the first UAE project of this kind ever presented by a female Emirati filmmaker during this international event.
Al Khaja hosted the occasion to celebrate the news and the creative studio opening, and said the rebranding of her production company, previously known as D-Seven Motion Pictures to Nayla Al Khaja Films (NAKF), has been organised in order to accommodate the company’s new strategic orientation and its future developments.
Al Khaja announced that she has been chosen to pitch her first feature film to some of the international film community's most influential decision-makers as part of the prestigious The Producers Network at Cannes. She is the first Emirati to be chosen to be part of the Producers Network. For over 15 years, this exclusive program has been facilitating connections between cinema professionals to help boost film projects. Every year, the event welcomes more than 500 producers from all across the world for a series of meetings and events designed to encourage international co-productions and networking.
Al Khaja commented on the opportunity: “This is a tremendous opportunity, not only for the UAE film industry, but also for me as a film director, as it is obviously a first in the history of the UAE. I’m extremely grateful towards the international film professionals from different backgrounds who selected my project with the DIFF organizers, thus giving me a chance to become the voice of my fellow citizens and Emirati filmmakers in such a prestigious gathering.”
Al Khaja meet with potential partners that can move projects forward including co-producers, sales agents, festivals and film funds. Talking about the impact of the event on her career, Al Khaja continued: “I will definitely stay true to my life-long commitment to develop and promote worldwide the UAE film industry, while making the most of this milestone in my career. Overall, I’m proud and excited to remain a pioneer and represent my nation in an event of that caliber.”
The artistically designed new Creative Studio has been conceptualised not only as an incubator for Al Khaja’s ongoing and future projects, but also to serve as a creative hub for local talents. Located in Sidra Tower, Tecom, the new facility will host the company’s creative team, in an inspiring layout, and will be a platform for mentoring Emirati talents. The studio will also enable NAKF to showcase its expertise to potential and existing clients and contribute to the promotion of the UAE film industry.
“I have been blessed to find such a nice and well-served space, redesigned with the support of IDdesign and KARE. I really wanted to create a space where both my team and our visitors would feel at home and the IDdesign and KARE teams were really helpful in the selection of the right furniture and accessories and in the overall set-up for the studio. I don’t think I could have found a better location and better partners for my plans. The studio, its enhanced efficiencies and our equipment graciously provided by Canon Middle East, will help us continue to grow and develop to keep pace with our clients’ needs, allowing us to provide exceptional value and premium service along the way,” concluded Nayla Al Khaja.
The Studio’s atmosphere has been designed to boost for intellectual exchange and accelerate new projects, since Al Khaja wishes, from now on, to focus on her 4 core areas of expertise: Film Director, Motivational Speaker, Influencer for Brands and Khaleeji Culture Consultant.