Red Sea film festival announces $3m for prizes, production

The prizes will be awarded at the inaugural festival in Jeddah between March 12 and 21, 2020.  (Photo/Social media)
Updated 30 August 2019

Red Sea film festival announces $3m for prizes, production

  • Prizes to be awarded at the inaugural festival in Jeddah in March
  • "The Book of Sun” and “Forty Years and a Night” to be premiered at the festival

JEDDAH: The Red Sea International Film Festival has announced cash prizes totaling $3 million to be awarded at the inaugural festival in Jeddah between March 12 and 21, 2020. 

Competition prizes reward cinematic excellence from around the world, emphasizing innovation and daring expression. The competition runs across six categories, with winners chosen by a jury of eminent international film figures.

The Golden Yusr Trophy for best feature carries a $100,000 cash prize and the Silver Yusr Trophy for best director is worth $50,000. There will also be an audience award carrying a cash prize of $50,000.

A Silver Yusr Trophy will be awarded for best screenplay, actor, actress and cinematic contribution.

An additional Golden Yusr Trophy will be awarded for best short film, which brings a $50,000 investment for a future project plus a five-month creative residency in Old Town, Jeddah.

The best short film prize is part of the Red Sea Shorts competition, featuring the most exciting contemporary voices from the Arab world, including student directors and first-time filmmakers.

The Golden Yusr Trophy takes its name from the black coral formations found off the Red Sea coast. An international competition to design the award will be announced shortly.

The details of the mentoring and production funds were also revealed, showcasing the festival’s commitment to promoting talent and daring storytelling in the Arab world.

The Bait Al-Montage Fund will support up to six Arab films with grants totaling $100,000. The grantees will be revealed during the Red Sea Souk, the festival’s industry days, taking place between March 13 and 17.

The festival will also support the Red Sea Lodge — an intensive five-month mentoring and training program for 12 teams of Arab filmmakers. Delivered in collaboration with TorinoFilmLab in the lead up to the 2020 festival, two participants will be awarded grants of $500,000 each following a pitch to a jury of industry leaders.

Also supporting production, the one-time Tamheed Fund will realize two new Saudi feature films, bestowing grants of $500,000 each. 

The enthusiasm of the local film scene was demonstrated by an overwhelming number of submissions, with “The Book of Sun” by Faris Godus and “Forty Years and a Night” by Mohammed Al-Holayyil selected. The films will be premiered at the festival.

The final production initiative is the $400,000 funding of a special omnibus of up to six short films made by Saudi women. The short films will be shown as a collective at the festival.


What We Are Reading Today: Free for Life by Christopher Lee Maher

Updated 17 October 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Free for Life by Christopher Lee Maher

Unresolved physical, spiritual, mental and emotional stress, tension, and structural distortion rob people of their ability to do what they truly love. The majority of the available tools designed to help you manage your complex stressors are a distraction from the underlying road blocks that keep your body from healing itself. There is a much better way to rebalance and restore your health so you can resume doing all the things that bring you joy, peace and happiness.

The intense complex stressors  Christopher Lee Maher experienced as a child and as a Navy SEAL inspired him to embody, study and develop powerful systems that create instantaneous, permanent change at a conscious, unconscious and subconscious level.

He introduces his remarkable wellness program in Free for Life. His True Body Intelligence system is a suite of  subtractive methodologies specifically designed to restore balance to the emotions, body, brain, and nervous system, according to a review published on goodreads.com.

The systems within True Body Intelligence assist in reintegrating every aspect of your being to offer real, permanent solutions for root causes, not bandages for symptoms.