Arab Cinema Week
Arab Cinema Week Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai’s Cinema Akil will host the first edition of Arab Cinema Week from October 7-16, screening Arab features and short films.

It is being launched at the Alserkal Avenue venue as a recurring annual event that will highlight talents from the region.

Curated by Rabih El Khoury, the 10-day Arab Cinema Week will open with BAFTA-winning Jordanian director Bassel Ghandour’s movie ‘The Alleys’.

“The first edition of Arab Cinema Week delivers on our mission of being the home of Arab independent cinema and filmmakers,” said Butheina Kazim, founder of Cinema Akil, which is the UAE’s only independent cinema.

She added: “With a robust line-up of speakers and filmmakers coming to Dubai for this, the programme brings together stories from 11 Arab countries, showcases nine feature films and six shorts while also highlighting nine female directors from across the region. In the absence of a national film festival, I am proud to dedicate our platform to annually present a range in the program that also celebrates the growing film industries in our region; giving them the attention they very much deserve.”

Most of the films will be introduced to UAE audiences for the first time. Cinema Akil will also give audiences the chance to meet the directors at the screening of their films. This will include a special encounter with acclaimed Palestinian actor Saleh Bakri on October 9, in which he will conduct a master class to discuss his career and collaborations with Arab filmmakers.

Program Curator, Rabih El Khoury, said: “Arab Cinema Week, in addition to hosting and screening innovative works of the Arab world’s acclaimed and emerging artists, has been designed to bring together a range of themes for Arab stories with filmmakers narrating their heartbreaks, their quotidian, their victories, their struggles and their moments of personal bliss. Each of them is unique, telling, and speaking volumes about the talent our region holds. The program has been conceived to spark conversation and encourage discussion, all of which will be made possible with the presence of creators at their respective screenings.”

Tickets are priced at Dh56.50 and are available online, along with the full schedule of films.