The festival will open with Shekhar Kapur’s romantic comedy What’s Love Got To Do With It? and conclude with Saudi director Khaled Fahd’s “Valley Road”.
The Red Sea International Film Festival (RedSeaIFF), in partnership with Vox Cinemas and MBC Group, has unveiled the program for its second edition, which will be held in Jeddah from December 1st to 10th.
The festival welcomes filmmakers, talent, media, industry professionals and film fans to a 10-day celebration of global cinema.
Under the motto “Film is Everything”, the event will showcase 131 feature films and short films from 61 countries in 41 languages by established and emerging talent and will host 34 world premieres, 17 Arabic premieres and 47 MENA premieres with a range of filmmakers and actors participating in many films were present. More films are expected to be added in the coming weeks.
What does love have to do with it? directed by Shekhar Kapur, written by Jemima Khan and produced by Studiocanal and Working Title will open the second edition of the film festival.
Gliding between London and Lahore, love and friendship, tradition and iconoclasm, What does love have to do with it? is a cross-cultural British romantic comedy that follows a filmmaker who decides to document her best friend’s journey to an arranged marriage.
The closing film of the festival is the world premiere of valley road by award-winning Saudi writer and director Khaled Fahd, starring Hamad Farhan, Naif Khalaf and Aseel Omran. valley road follows Ali, who is perceived as disabled by his family and the people of the beautiful Saudi Arabian mountain village where he lives, Alwadi. Only his older sister, Siham, realizes that being different is a part of him. The film beautifully explores human values and encounters that can shape personality, and invites us to take a better look at the fragile people around us.
The festival will also showcase the young voices shaping Saudi Arabia’s film culture, seven new Saudi feature films and 18 Saudi short films will be presented to the global film industry and local audiences.
In addition to Red Sea: Competition, Red Carpet Galas, Outdoor Screenings and Special Presentations, the festival will host a range of cinema programs in the following sections: Festival Favorites, New Saudi/New Cinema, Red Sea: Treasures, Red Sea: Arab and International Spectacular, Red Sea: Family and Children, Red Sea: Virtual Reality, Red Sea: Series and Red Sea: New Vision, a new strand dedicated to filmmakers pushing the boundaries of creativity with genre-defining filmmaking that challenges audiences becomes .
Commenting on the programming offering, Mohammed Al Turki, CEO of RedSeaIFF said: “Red Sea International Film Festival cements its position as a unique and powerful platform to celebrate films, connect cultures and broaden our horizons. Film is Everything embodies this year’s festival, a bold, cinematic, progressive and cultural ten-day event for film lovers, storytellers, talent and industry professionals from around the world. Our programmers have curated the best of Arabic and international cinema, talented galas featuring some of the most anticipated films of the year, and an exceptional cast of amazing new Saudi talent paving the way into our country’s thriving industry. We are so grateful for the continued support of our sponsors and the incredible dedication of our talented RSIFF team, and look forward to welcoming everyone to our much-anticipated second edition in Jeddah.”
Festival-goers have access to a tailor-made program of in-depth talks with filmmakers and acting talent who explore their extraordinary careers and current projects.
This year’s interviewees include Fatih Akin, a German film director, screenwriter and producer who has won numerous awards for his work, including the Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival for his film Frontal (2004), Best Screenplay at the Cannes Film Festival for The edge of heaven (2007) and the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film for in the fading (2017). His biopic about the German rapper and label boss Xatar, Rhinegoldwith Emilio Sakraya, will also premiere at the festival.
Do it like Beckham Writer-director Gurinder Chadha talks about her illustrious career and how film became a cultural phenomenon. Gurinder Chadha is one of the UK’s most respected filmmakers and was awarded an OBE in 2006 for her services to the British film industry. She became the first British Asian woman to direct a feature film with her in 1993 Bhaji on the beachwhich grossed nearly £60m at the box office and received critical acclaim around the world for its wit, coming-of-age connection and uniquely authentic portrayal of British Asian culture.
From Egypt, the festival will welcome Egyptian actress Mona Zaki and veteran actor Hussein Fahmy, whose careers have spanned more than five decades and have directed and starred in over 100 film, television and theater productions. This year he returned to the role of President of the Cairo International Film Festival after a 21-year absence. Festival-goers also have the chance to see Fahmy in the Egyptian classic Khali Balak Min Zouzou (Take Care of Zouzou) Directed by Hassan Al-Imam (1972). Celebrating its 50th anniversary, the film has been lovingly restored for audiences to discover or see again on the big screen.
Tunisian film director and Oscar nominee Kaouther Ben Hania will share insights into her celebrated career, which began in Tunisia, and her work in her four short films, documentaries and four fiction films is deeply rooted in life and social satire.
The line-up includes that of Saudi director Fahad Alammari alchallate+by the Lebanese director Lara Saba All roads lead to RomeSouth Korean drama Estate agents, Directed and written by Hirokazu Kore-eda, The Banshees by Inisherinby director and writer Martin McDonagh, Park Chan-Wook’s decision to go, realm of lightby Oscar winner Sam Mendes, Zeyad Alhusaini How I got therea co-production between Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, directed by Egyptian director, writer and producer John Ikram Sawers’ Kamlaanimated comedy adventure film Puss in Boots: The Last Wishdirected by Joel Crawford, Moroccan filmmaker Yasmine Benkiran Queensthe latest film from Moroccan directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah rebeland Ruben Ostlunds triangle of sadnessamong other.
Representatives from 46 countries will attend the Red Sea Souk, which will take place from December 3rd to 6th.
All projects selected by the Souk compete for Red Sea Fund cash prizes, which are awarded by two juries. The Project Market jury awards a $35,000 Jury Special Mention Award for both development and $100,000 for production. All selected projects are eligible for additional awards totaling $500,000 sponsored by the Red Sea Souk’s sponsors and partners.
Shivani Pandya Malhotra, Managing Director of RedSeaIFF added: “The country is fast cementing its position as a hub for film, culture, arts and fashion, while evolving into a world-class center for film production. The Red Sea IFF is at the heart of this transformation, providing a platform to showcase a new generation full of energy and creativity. Through the Red Sea Souk we are able to support filmmakers at all stages of their careers and our programs follow the full filmmaking cycle throughout the year. We are excited to welcome recognized international and Arabian talent, pioneering industry leaders, the next generation of filmmakers and exciting game changers to a program of screenings, personal panels, masterclasses, networking and conversations at a time of immense change that we are part of broader global conversation.”
The Talent Days, taking place on December 7th-8th as part of Red Sea Souk activities, are a series of sessions aimed at nurturing a new generation of filmmakers. Acclaimed director Kaouther Ben Hania will direct the second edition of Talent Days and will be joined by creatives from around the world, including Rania Attieh, Raed El Mansari, Hakim Mao, Kathia Bayer and Jonathan Goldman, who will mentor and support the professional development of Talent.
Additionally, Talent Days will feature a dedicated network of international industry leaders from AFAC, USC, Nomadis Film, Netflix, Cineways, EAVE and MPM Film attending to discover authentic new voices they hope to work with in the future.
The Red Sea Souk also offers opportunities to network and build collaborations for future projects. Covering development, production and distribution, three sessions hosted throughout the Souk are designed to foster connections between key industry players, filmmakers and festival-goers, providing a comprehensive and nurturing journey from script to screen.
The souk will feature 43 exhibiting companies from 10 countries, including distribution companies, film commissions, national cinema pavilions, post-production studios and major festival industry sponsors.