Abu Dhabi Film Festival takes off

Abu Dhabi Film Festival’s 2013 edition started off with a great start last night. The festival opened to the very famous, ‘Life of Crime’ co-produced by Image Nation Abu Dhabi. The event also witnessed the event of Forest Whitaker being honoured with the Black Pearl Career Achievement Award.

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Whitaker who was extremely happy said, “There is reference to sacrifice and hard work, with a hope of good future. I’m thankful you think of me in that way.” He also sang some Arabic verses in his merry mood.

On the other hand, the director of programming Teresa Cavina said,” The festival was proud to welcome ‘Life of Crime’ as its opener for three reasons- It has a little bit of the heart of Abu Dhabi in it, as it is co-produced by Imagination Abu Dhabi; it’s the last love child of the great writer Elmore Leonard who passed away earlier this year; and it’s a fantastic film.”

The film is a kidnapping story set in 1978. It features John Hawke, Yasiin Bey (aka Mos Def), Isla Fisher, Will Forte, Tim Robbins and Mark Boone Junior. Image Nation Abu Dhabi produced the film along with Ashok Amritraj’s Hyde Park Entertainment.  (Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance has been one of their joint ventures)

Image Nation’s CEO Michael Garin said, “Our international partners are very important to us, because our Emirati filmmakers can get real-world experience. Also, it’s always a wonderful feeling to screen a movie here, especially on opening night.”

Speaking of the festival the director of the movie Ali Al Jabri said, “We have a lot to be proud of. The achievements of the last six years have been able to make our festival as strong and coherent as it is today. We were always determined to make this festival successful.” The filmmaker expressed his views about how much the festival inspired everyone and especially him. He said, “This is more than a typical cinematic platform, we are contributing to the international film landscape and becoming an example to other festivals. This has helped Arab productions to move forward.”

The world premiere of ’Djinn’ produced by United Arab Emirates and directed by Tobe Hooper was presented today at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival.

Fore more on the festival, log on to their official website, here.

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