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Where is the regional film hub?
Qatar has just joined the race to become the Middle East’s film hub for regional movie makers.
August 25, 2009 1:29 by Aarti Nagraj
The Doha Tribeca Film Festival starts in October this year, and its organizers are now hoping that it will make Qatar the regional film hub.
“We want to create a hub where filmmakers can stay,” Amanda Palmer, executive director of the festival, told Reuters. While there is a lot of local talent in Qatar and the region, it needs to be tapped into and educated, she added.
“There are also existing filmmakers so we need to give them a higher level of engagement and education, workshops, scrip-writing developments, producer-investor networking and distribution,” she said, adding that emerging, aspiring and established filmmakers need to be equally supported.
The Tribeca Film Festival was founded by actor Robert De Niro in New York after the September 11 attacks and Qatar is the event’s first international venue. According to Palmer, the festival will host around 30 films, out of which eight to 10 will be Middle Eastern Arab films.
The region is not new to film festivals; Dubai hosts the annual Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF), and last year, also started the Gulf Film Festival to give Arab cinema a boost. Meanwhile, neighboring Abu Dhabi launched the Middle East International Film Festival in October 2007.
But according to Palmer, Doha’s Tribeca festival will be different from its regional counterparts.
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