DIFF Daily 2010

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Day 3

‘Anyone who dares to be different becomes annoying to others’

Dec 14, 2010 - 12:19 PM

Marianne Khoury is the Cairo-based filmmaker, who with Mustapha Hasnaoui, directed ‘Zelal’, a stark and poignant account of life in two Cairo mental homes. A long-term collaborator of Youssef Chahine’s, Khoury’s film is a small masterpiece of contemporary Egyptian social observation. ‘Zelal’ is a film that goes beyond the documentation of those suffering mental illnesses, it’s a critique of Egyptian society at large. Would you agree? This film is about ordinary human beings. There is a very fine line between madness and sanity, and anyone who dares to be different becomes annoying to others. ... read more


Dec 14, 2010 - 12:18 PM

The Torino FilmLab Interchange Programme, organised with DIFF and EAVE, is developing 11 projects that aim to link the European and Arab film worlds. Following a week-long session in Turin in May, the writers, directors and producers have come to DIFF to refine their projects and pitch for backers on December 15 and interested producers should contact Lucas Rosant at the Dubai Film Connection. Ben Walters met some of them on a break from this week’s session – the participants were excited about their projects’ progress, apprehensive about the impending pitching sessions and a little fragile after the ... read more

‘The King’s Speech’ – much more than indie Brit film

Dec 14, 2010 - 11:14 AM

Tom Hooper's ‘The King's Speech,’ which opened the Dubai International Film Festival this year, is not just your typical indie Brit pic. The film also offers a case study in how the indie film sector can harness opportunity in the global film biz and move quickly, even in times of economic hardship and without the help of a major Hollywood studio. Those involved with the historical drama, top-lining Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush, give much of the credit to Iain Canning and Emile Sherman, who run the Australian and UK production company See-Saw Films. See-Saw put together the financing and produced the film ... read more

Interview with Lucas Rosant, Dubai Film Connection Manager

Dec 14, 2010 - 11:14 AM

Dubai Film Connection manager Lucas Rosant tells Ben Walters about the challenges for this year’s edition of the matchmaking platform that boosts selected projects at development stage. The DFC starts today and the awards will be announced on December 16. What role does the DFC play in bringing projects to fruition? The DFC comes in at this fragile moment when projects have a financing script but still need help to go into production. If you don’t have a good script, you won’t have a good film. And help at the early stage of moving from script to film is crucial – you don’t get up in the morning and ... read more

Around the world at DIFF

Dec 14, 2010 - 11:13 AM

All About My Father ‘Beirut Al Mouss’ (All About My Father) finally makes its way to the Dubai International Film Festival after five years of on-and-off filming. A DIFF debutante in 2010, Lebanese filmmaker Zeina Sfeir says the film is an extremely personal film for her, as it’s all about the director’s father. “If I were not a filmmaker, I can’t imagine being anything else,” says Sfeir, who fell in love with the world of cinema as an 8-year old child. “You should have an issue to talk about if you want to make a film. You need to be sensitive, passionate and patient. That’s what makes a ... read more

Interview with Paul Zilk

Dec 14, 2010 - 11:04 AM

Paul Zilk, CEO of Reed Midem, organises some of the most distinct and robust markets in the entertainment biz, including Mipcom in October and MipTv in April. At his first visit to the Dubai International Film Festival, he tells Variety about his experiences and why Dubai Filmmart can help boost the acquisition and distribution of Arab content. What brings you to DIFF for your company? The Middle Eastern region is an important part of our entertainment markets with MipTv and Mipcom in Cannes and over recent years the presence and participation by Middle Eastern companies has been increasing a lot at our ... read more


Dec 14, 2010 - 11:02 AM

Ahead of his appearance at the Opening Night Gala, Colin Firth sat down with the DIFF Daily and shared his philosophy of life ON WHAT BEING AN ACTOR IS REALLY ABOUT: Your job description to enter an experience which is not your own and you take whatever imaginative journey you can into that person’s point of view and you try to own it, to inhabit it. ON EXPRESSING EMOTION BY NOT EXPRESSING EMOTION: If you’re playing someone who is grieving, then you have to move towards grief, experience grief, want to grieve. So you’re always making this journey inwards and the journey outwards. Basically, the way to ... read more

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