Emirati filmmaker Nawaf Al Janahi (L)
Abu Dhabi - Arab Today
Cinema and literature have been sharing an intimate connection ever since the invention of the silver screen and the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF) will honour that connection for the first time this year.
The 24th edition of the fair, which will take place from April 30 to May 5, will have a ‘mini', 30-seat cinema hall set up on its premises dedicated to Emirati films.
"This move represents a step towards supporting an evolving sector on a local level, which requires unremitting institutional efforts to create a new mentality that takes cinematic expression more seriously and stimulates discussion using a more open and inspiring visual language,” said Mohammed Al Shehhi, director of research and publishing at the National Library.
The Black Box Cinema project was created for ADIBF by Emirati filmmaker and actor Nawaf Al Janahi. It involves the screening of 15 Emirati short films, documentaries and animation films throughout the duration of the fair, as well as six workshops and seminars discussing the local cinematic movement, filmmaking artistry and film criticism.
"There are a few Emirati films based on books adaptations, but they are either technically or aesthetically not well made, and we didn't want to present films based on this criteria. We wanted quality films,” said Al Janahi.
Initially, Al Janahi planned to include long feature movies, but since the screening is for ADIBF visitors — who may not have 90 minutes to spare for a movie at the fair — the cinematic programme was reduced to 30 minutes for each screening.
There is a fixed programme that allows the screening of each film twice daily, but fair visitors who purchase a book with a cinematic subject may choose to see any film they want from the programme, any time between 2pm and 5pm. All films have English subtitles.
Entry to the Black Box Cinema as well as ADIBF is free. "It's no secret that filmmakers make strenuous efforts to realise their dreams.
These efforts need effective support for us to be able to see our image reflected in inspiring movies that convey our voices. The Black Box Cinema project offers a glimpse of what is being achieved on the ground and establishes a dialogue among filmmakers,” said Al Janahi.
Source: Khaleej Times