Doha: The country’s film industry is “booming”, and films produced in Qatar are selected at major festivals and win international accolades, said Doha Film Institute (DFI) CEO Fatma Al Remaihi.
“We are very proud of our filmmakers, not just making films as a hobby, they take it very seriously,” Al Remaihi said on the sidelines of the Qatar Creates Press Launch on Sunday at M7 in Musheireb Downtown Doha.
She explained that the films supported by the institute have gained international recognition and praise. “It is really very rewarding to see all the hard work that has been done and the grounds that have been built over the years, step by step, to now see this result.
The CEO hopes there will be more to come. She also revealed that filmmakers who have completed their shorts are now working on their full-length feature films, which she pointed out is the next step for Qatar in feature film production.
Al Remaihi mentioned Sudanese filmmaker Suzannah Mirghani who won the ArteKino award at L’Atelier at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. Her DFI-funded film is called Cotton Queen. “We are very proud to be behind all these filmmakers and supporting them all this time.”
“Now we want to focus on the feature films that we have, the series that we have. DFI has opened up its grants for series and webseries, all of that – it’s the new generation; it also has a lot of influence on communities and the public and that’s where we want to put our trend,” she explained.
Additionally, she stated that once the feature begins filming, it will be released in commercial theaters. Currently, short films are only screened at film festivals.
The CEO of DFI stressed that the influence of cinema is crucial.
“Influencing is very important because as an image for the Middle East, the Islamic world, for the Arabs, it has been damaged over the years, and we have to do a lot because it is not the truth; we have to show the truth.
She also revealed that plans are in place to screen DFI films during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
“There will be a lot of screenings for a lot of films that have [been] shown before mostly local films. We will celebrate them in this building (M7) and you will see local performances. We will see many more.