Still from El Ott by Ibrahim El Batout
On Monday 29 September, the Abu Dhabi Film Festival announced the full line-up of films for its upcoming edition scheduled to take place in the last week of October.
Three Egyptian films: El Ott (2014) directed by Ibrahim El-Batout and starring Amr Waked, Um Ghayeb (Mother of the Unborn, 2014) directed by Nadine Salib, and I Exist (2014) directed by Ahmed Abdel-Naser, will take part in three competitive sections of the festival.
El Ott, which will run in the Narrative Competition section and Um Ghayeb in the Documentary Competition, are also world premieres.
A ten-minute long film, I Exist, makes its Middle East and North Africa (MENA) premiere and takes part in the Short Films Competition. In parallel, the short also runs in the festival's Child Protection section, competing against 13 other international entries. The award has been set up by the Ministry of Interior's Child Protection Centre.
El Ott, Um Ghayeb and I Exist, are the only entries from Egypt across all competitive and non-competitive sections of the festival.
The festival announced its opening film: From A to B by Emirati director Ali Mostafa, with a screenplay by Egyptian producer Mohamed Hefzy.
Within a few years, the Abu Dhabi Film Festival has established itself as one of the most important cinema events in the MENA region.
This year, the line-up includes 197 films from 61 countries, nine Feature Film World Premieres, 48 Short Film World Premieres.
Chosen from nearly 1,200 submissions, half of the films in the programme are from the Middle East.
The festival's press release reveals that with more than 30,000 attendees, the festival includes the high profile Narrative Competition, the New Horizons Competition for first and second feature length films, the Documentary Competition, as well as the Emirates Film Competition and the Short Film Competition.
Non-competitive Special Programmes are dedicated to The Arab Diaspora, Truffaut: The Man Who Loved Cinema and Restored Classics.
The festival was established in 2007 with the aim of helping to create a vibrant film culture throughout the region and has previously showcased the work of major figures in world cinema, including Ingmar Bergman and Naguib Mahfouz.
A key event in Abu Dhabi’s cultural calendar, it features an extensive ten-day programme of Arab and international cinema, complemented by red-carpet premieres and associated events.