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Arab Stars of Tomorrow and virtual reality among new additions at 13th Dubai film festival

The festival will run between 7 and 14 December

Ahram Online , Wednesday 12 Oct 2016
This year's Dubai International Film festival will launch Arab Stars of Tomorrow, and DIFFerent REALITY section in the programme (Photos: courtesy of DIFF)
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The Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) continues to grow with the region's thriving film industry.

This year's 13th edition of the festival will bring new initiatives including the launch of Arab Stars of Tomorrow, and a programme of films in virtual reality.

Arab Stars of Tomorrow is an offshoot of Screen International's acclaimed talent-spotting initiative Stars of Tomorrow based in the UK.

DIFF provides an ideal platform for a region based version of Stars of Tomorrow, for its 12-year pivotal role in spotlighting upcoming talents in the Middle East.

Promising talent from across the region will be shortlisted over the coming months ahead of the final list and recipients being announced during this year’s festival.

Stars of Tomorrow was launched 13 years ago by UK's Screen International. It holds a track record in indentifying many rising British and Irish Talents that made it to stardom, including actors Benedict Cumberbatch, Emily Blunt, James McAvoy, Eddie Redmayne, Carey Mulligan, Tom Hiddleston, as well as filmmakers Andrew Haigh and Andrea Arnold among others.

“This is an exciting opportunity to identify up-and-coming talent from the region and offer them an international platform. The local industry has been growing rapidly in recent years and it feels like the perfect time to be bringing the initiative to the region" said Matt Mueller, editor of Screen International, in a DIFF press release.

This year the festival will also introduce a new section titled DIFFerent REALITY, offering audiences a new experience. The section presents films in several genres, fiction, documentary and animation all in the newest technology of virtual reality.

This is the first initiative of its kind in the region, and will provide an immersion virtual reality and its growing popularity and how it will develop cinema and storytelling.

DIFF’s Chairman, Abdulhamid Juma commented "VR gives filmmakers a new, immersive medium which is an exciting new direction for cinema and our compelling and engaging line-up of VR films push the technological boundaries of storytelling. We are extremely excited to bring some of the best VR experiences to DIFF this December and invite film fans to experience the future of storytelling firsthand.”

DIFF’s business hub will also present delegates with the chance to hear from the leading and emerging virtual reality creators.

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