Professional Jury Panel from 15 Arab and non-Arab Countries
The management of Aljazeera International Documentary Film Festival has announced the formulation of the Jury Panel for its upcoming 9th edition, which will take place under the auspices of His Excellency, Sheikh Hamad Bin Thamer Al-Thani, Chairman of Aljazeera Board, from the 18th until the 21st of April, with “Windows” being the festival’s theme.
The Jury Panel is composed of 15 members, coming from different Arab and non-Arab countries as follows: Ana Maria Leyaristi (Spain), Chao Gan (China), Dr. Amal El Gamal (Egypt) , Dr. Kahlid Hroub (UK), Dr. Marzook Bashir Ben Marzook (Qatar), Giulia Amati (France), Gulbara Tolomushova (Kyrgyzstan), Dr. Habib Nasry (Morocco), Hady Zaccak (Lebanon), Sergio Trefaut ( Portugal), Dr. Yusuf Kaplan (Turkey), Hans-Peter Weymar (Germany) and Stephen Natanson (Italy).
Mr. Abbas Arnaout, Managing Director of the festival, announced that the “jury panel has been chosen very carefully and that all members are experts in the field of documentary films”. The Jury Panel changes with each edition and includes 15 Arab and non-Arab nationalities; thus assuring the best evaluation for participating films.
The Jury Panel is divided into groups according to the festival competitions; 205 films – 23 Long films, 82 Medium films, 53 Short films, 36 New Horizon films and 11 Promising films- will be viewed and evaluated. It is worth noting that the duration of short films is less than 30 minutes, Medium ranging between 30 and 59 minutes, and Long films longer than an hour.
Mr. Arnaout asserted that the Jury Panel is totally independent; hence its members agree and choose the winning films according to high international standards.
The festival awards grant the winning film in each of the categories (Long, Medium, Short) a cash prize, to be divided between the film director and the producer as follows: 50,000 Qatari Riyals for Long, 40,000 Qatari Riyals for Medium and 30,000 Qatari Riyals for Short.
The Jury Award is divided as follows: 25,000 Qatari Riyals for Long, 20,000 Qatari Riyals for Medium and 15,000 Qatari Riyals for Short. As for the New Horizon Award, it will be as follows: 15,000 Qatari Riyals for the winner of the first place and 10,000 Qatari Riyals for the winner of the second place.
Regarding the Special Awards, Mr. Arnaout explains: “The Aljazeera Documentary Channel, the Public Liberties and Human Rights Section and the Aljazeera Children’s Channel will offer prizes to all categories as follows: 40,000 Qatari Riyals for the winning film in the Long category, 30,000 Qatari Riyals for the winning film in the Medium category and 20,000 Qatari Riyals for the winning films in the Short category.”
In the forthcoming edition, the countries that have submitted entry forms reached 90, out of which 33, will be participating. Countries like Qatar, Jordan, Austria, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Cuba, Egypt, France, Holland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Bolivia, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, Nepal, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States, Yemen, and Latvia will be participating, with Mozambique and Cyprus participating for the first time.
It is worth mentioning that the Chinese presence in the festival is distinguished; with 33 Chinese films participating in all film competitions and the film “Appointment” being chosen as the opening film.