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AUS students prominent at Abu Dhabi Film Festival 2011
American University of Sharjah (AUS) students form a major part of the lineup of nominees for the Emirates Film Competition at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival (ADFF) 2011, which begins tomorrow. Nine of the nominated films in the festival were made by students in the Minor in Film program offered by the AUS College of Architecture, Art and Design (CAAD). The film festival will run October 13-22.
The AUS student films nominated for the Student Short Documentary Competition include 6 On 18 (Setta Ala Tamantasher) directed by Salma Serry, Symphony of Letters directed by Alanoud Al Ali and Faces of Petra directed by Maha Dahlan.
The nominations for the Student Short Narrative Competition include Dinner #7665 and Photogenic directed by Salma Serry, Grande directed by Maha Dahlan, Halfway directed by Mohammed Mamdouh, In Mirror directed by Eisa Al Sabousi and Reverie directed by Alanoud Al Ali.
The films were produced in three classes taught by Jack Swanstrom, Zlatan Filipovic and Seth Thompson, Assistant Professors in Design at CAAD.
"While CAAD has always strongly supported independent and student voices in regional cinema, it's important to note that the Minor in Film was a program that started just over a year ago," said Swanstrom. "It is immensely gratifying to see our very first group of film minors recognized by organizations as prestigious as the Emirates Film Competition and the Abu Dhabi Film Festival," he added.
Maha Dahlan, who has two short films premiering at ADFF, said "When I first joined the Minor in Film program, I never really thought that I'd be making projects and short movies worthy of film festivals, let alone imagine ever being accepted in one. This is a great opportunity for me to meet people that are already in the business. Words can't describe just how great it feels."
Established in 2007, the Abu Dhabi Film Festival aims to encourage film culture through the region and works at bringing Arab filmmakers to the forefront.
Another AUS student, Sarah Alagroobi, will premiere her film The Forbidden Fruit at the Dubai Film Festival in December.