META Film Fest, the new international film festival covering the Middle East, Asia and Africa’s film industry, kicked off on 27th October at the Vox Cinemas at Nakheel Mall in the Palm Jumeirah where more than 70 films from 25 countries are being featured.
“Today, we will witness a new dawn in the entertainment industry in the UAE with a new film fest that is going to set a new benchmark. It is a small step for a great future for the Middle East’s growing film industry that celebrates local and international content and talent” Leila Masinaei, Festival Director and Managing Partner of Great Minds Event Management, organiser of the META Film Fest, said.
“As the first of many film fest editions to come, this marks a very firm first step for the regional film industry that will chronicle the production and development of blockbusters that will be produced in this part of the world in the years to come.”
With a tagline of ‘Tolerance and Unity through Film’, the three-day film fest that continues till October 29, 2022, started with the screening of three short films from the UAE, including Deadline, Children of All and IDI, as well as The Dawn of the Great Steppe, Terminus, The Tortoise and the Snail, The Apple Day, followed by a number of short films from Iran, Jordan, Sweden, Korea, Egypt. However, the main attraction of the day was the gala premiere of Emily by the director Frances O’Conner, who attended the premiere as well! It has already been nominated for Toronto International Film Festival and Sitges – Catalonian International Film Festival.
META Film Fest has attracted several international and regional celebrities including Cris Mejia, Nayla Al Khwaja, Emirati film director, Maria Bello, and Casey Shannon, Actors of Children of All, Shalila Samavati, actor of Tunnel, Pegah Ahangarani and Neslihan Yeldan of Juror, among many others.
Most of the movies that are being featured at the Meta Film Fest, have already received multiple nominations at different international film festivals across the world, making the selection for UAE audiences more attractive.
Among these Beloved, Borga, Chosen, District Terminal, El Arena, Emily, Golden Blood, Hard Shell Soft Shell and African Redemption: The Life and Legacy of Marcus Garvey will be premiered at the three-day festivities.
Among these, Iranian film District Terminal has received three nominations at the Berlin International Film Festival, Best Film category nomination at the Festival du nouveau cinema and Sao Paulo International Film Festival.
French feature film Hard Shell, Soft Shell (Fragile) has received four nominations including Best International Feature Fiction in Beirut International Women Film Festival and Best Feature Film at Buzz IFF.