United Arab Emirates Film Festival in Washington, DC

Welcome to the first annual United Arab Emirates Film Festival held in partnership with American University's School of Communication. Honoring the creativity of UAE's growing number of film makers, the UAE Film Festival provides a platform to showcase awarding winning films, talented producers, directors and actors. This festival also creates an opportunity to share highlights from the UAE's burgeoning film industry. For more information about the UAE's growing media and film industry, click here

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Festival Schedule:

Wednesday, September 12


Sea Shadow Film Screening (feature full length film)


Q&A with film director, Nawaf Al Janahi


Thursday, September 13


The Turtle film screening (short film)


The Philosopher film screening (short film)


Panel discussion with Directors Abdulla Al Kaabi and Nawaf Al Janahi and CEO of Image Nation Abu Dhabi, Michael Garin

Reception and refreshments to follow discussion

Director: Nawaf Al Janahi

Actors: Omar Al Mulla,  Neven Madi, Abrar Al Hamad

Year: 2011

Duration: 98 minutes

Synopsis:  Set in a small seaside village in the UAE, Sea Shadow follows teenagers Mansour and Kaltham as they struggle with tradition and convention in their journey towards adulthood. Bound by family and deeply-rooted values, the pair must find the courage to forge their own paths.

Producer: National Media Council

Actors: Ahmed Al Dahoouri

Year: 2012

Length: 14:03

Synopsis: Ali, devastated by the death of Pearl, a turtle that had been under study for over 40 years, is determined to stop the unnecessary carnage to marine life caused by plastic bags. Pearl had ingested a bag thinking it was a jellyfish. The blockage in its digestive tract caused Pearl to become positively buoyant and unable to feed on the seabed. 

Ali's on film solution to ban non-biodegradable plastics in the UAE, is based on a real life government initiative in the UAE to keep its waters safe, clean and healthy for UAE's wildlife. Produced for the UAE's Pavilion at EXPO 2012 in Yeosu, Korea, the "Turtle" has already been watched by over 300,000 visitors praising its dramatic and entertaining presentation of a strong environmental message.

Director:  Abdulla Al Kaabi

Actors: Jean Reno, Cyrille Thouvenin

Year: 2010

Length: 17 minutes

Synopsis: Baggio is a successful footballer, martial artist and a pianist living the high life with his fame and fortune. Unfortunately, all of the perfections in his life do not help satisfy that urging need in Baggio to do something with his life. So he embarks on himself to drop all his titles and adopt a new title as a philosopher! He decides to strip himself of all material objects he owns in order to attain a clear, pure mind for thought and philosophy but it doesn't prove to be as easy as he thought it would be.

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