|Amman, 24 August 2021 – For the second year in a row, the Jordanian capital hosts the Amman International Film Festival – Awal Film (AIFF), which opened last night, 23 August 2021. The Festival continues until 31 August 2021. Following the popular success of the drive-in cinema at the inaugural edition of the AIFF, the opening ceremony took place there too this year, making it the first to be organised in such a format in Jordan.|
Starting with a musical compilation of soundtracks from Jordanian, Arab and International movies, performed by the Jordanian Ensemble, the opening was attended by Princess Rym Ali, President of the AIFF. She addressed the audience on screen with a welcome note saying: “This Festival was launched last year despite all the challenges imposed by the global health crisis. The Amman International Film Festival can make a difference to the audience and filmmakers alike.” She added: “We seek to provide a platform to present first-time achievements in filmmaking from the Arab world and beyond, as well as to support Jordanian and Arab projects by holding a series of thought-provoking talks and seminars. We look forward to becoming a beacon in the world of film festivals, in the near future.”
The opening also included a tribute to Jordan’s pioneer of modern art, Mohanna Durra, who left us earlier this year while he had designed the Black Iris trophy, the award and symbol of the AIFF. The Festival also remembered the prominent cinematic figures, who left us this year but who remain alive through their works.
The ceremony was followed by the screening of the Palestinian film “Gaza mon amour” (2020), directed by Tarzan and Arab Nasser, screened for the first time in Jordan. This was the Jordanian première of “Gaza mon amour”. This edition includes 51 films from 26 countries, all recent productions between 2020 and 2021.
The screenings will also take place in two other locations: the open-air theatre at the Royal Film Commission – Jordan (RFC), as well as TAJ Cinemas in compliance with public safety measures. Some films will be streamed online on Istikana platform. The AIFF is also keen on reaching audiences in the governorates specifically in Irbid, Salt and Wadi Rum.
Most of the screenings will be followed by discussions with their filmmakers allowing them they share their experiences. The Festival’s selection committee worked around the clock for months to go through over hundreds of submissions to carefully draft a rich and diverse programme for the 2nd edition, all Jordanian premières, four of which are world premières, whereas eight films are premières in the Arab region.
Seven films will be competing for the Black Iris Award for Best Arab Feature-length Narrative, seven documentaries will be competing for the Black Iris for Best Arab Feature-length Documentary, while 18 films will be competing for the Black Iris Award for Best Arab Narrative Short. The international films are competing for the Audience Award.
This edition is hosting the Franco-Arab Film Festival in a special section “Franco-Arab Rendez-vous” that includes the opening film, three feature films and four shorts. Additionally, the AIFF sheds light on the career of the renowned Syrian director, Mohamed Malas, who will give a closer look at his cinematic journey and how it evolved.
The Amman Film Industry Days (AFID) programme starts today in parallel with the screenings, presenting a series of workshops, talks and pitching platforms for Jordanian and Arab projects in development or post-production.
The AIFF’s Closing Ceremony will take place at the RFC on 31 August, during which the Jordanian short film “Diana”, directed by Maysoon Al-Hubaidi, will be screened out of competition. The jurors will also announce the winners in the various categories.
For photos of the event, click here.
|For further information about the Amman International Film Festival – Awal Film (AIFF), including all of our social media platforms and contact information, please click here or visit our website, or call Rick W. Hindi at +962792222011. For information regarding the Amman Film Industry Days (AFID), click here. For questions on AFID please email: firstname.lastname@example.org|
Partners of the AIFF: Jordan Tourism Board; Royal Film Commission-Jordan; Abdali Investment and Development; Zain; Royal Jordanian; Pikasso Jordan; Ghiath & Nadia Sukhtian Foundation; Edgo; Greater Amman Municipality; Bank al Etihad; TAJ Cinemas.
Partners of AFID: Acousmatic Film Sound, SAE Institute, Slate Film Services, MAD Solutions, Creative Media Solutions, Malmö Arab Film Festival, Greener Screen, Where to Film Location Scout & Management, Rum Pictures, Jordan Pioneers Multimedia Co., Gruvi, TaleBox.
Media Partners: Jordan Radio & Television Corporation; Roya Media Group; Al-Mamlaka TV; Hala Radio; Bliss 104.3 FM; Mazaj FM; Radio Dahab.