Ahead of this weekend's triumphant return of one of our favourite film festivals, we speak to Qabila CEO and Co-Founder, Hatem Tag, to find out what they have in store...
Film festivals are one of our favourite past times here in Cairo. With a mainstream film market so down and out, we are always craving to see something that doesn't involve a Shaabi song and a belly dancer, but a somewhat intellectual narrative that's a little different. Ahead of the third installment of Qabila's successful film festival, running between October 8th - 10th, we have the pleasure to have a sit and talk with Hatem Tag, Qabila CEO and Co-Founder, to find what we can expect from this third installment in what is quickly becoming one of Egypt's, and soon the region's, top short film festivals.
"Qabila’s third annual film festival will provide a platform for independent filmmakers to exhibit and develop their work, creating a space where films are screened, discussed and recognised through a series of workshops with established filmmakers, Q&A sessions, networking activities and a competition where distinctive films are celebrated. The festival will provide opportunities for filmmakers to expose their work to a wide audience and benefit from the dialogue and interactions with a diverse group of professionals and industry delegates," says Tag.
"Qabila will offer travel funds for interested applicants to come and screen their film in Egypt, offering Q&A sessions and participating in the networking activities and workshops offered. Moreover, stemming from our belief that distinctive films and stories should gain maximum exposure and reach the widest audience, we aim for this edition to create partnerships, where our finalists automatically qualify for other established film festivals around the globe."
The festival was founded in May 2013, with the original edition having received 250 submissions from 20 different countries. Meanwhile, the second round received 484 submission representing 66 countries, with a wide audience turn-up. The third round aims to build on this growth momentum and increase both the number of film submissions and countries represented and they have certainly succeeded. "This year we received 2,700 films from 100 countries which will be screening 170 films throughout the three days of the festival," continues Tag. With a jury consisting of director Ahmed Abdallah, Terri Ginsberg, Arab Lotfi, Tania Kamal Eldin, Malek Khouri, American filmmaker Colin Levy and concept artist Ahmed Tealab, there's no shortage of big names in attendance.
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