Sreekar Prasad, Deepa Mehta Bag Dubai Awards


Dubai, Dec 20: Firaaq, directed by Nandita Das, and Deepa Mehta's Heaven on Earth have bagged awards at the Asia-Africa Competitions category coinciding with the close of the Dubai International Film Festival.

Sreekar Prasad won the Best Editor award for Firaaq while the Best Screenplay award went to Deepa Mehta for Heaven on Earth.

"This year our jury members were hard at work trying to evaluate the merits of truly excellent films. We are extremely proud of the films that we have screened, and choosing between them was very difficult," DIFF's Artistic Director, Masoud Amralla al Ali said.

"However, we are pleased with the results, and hope to see these filmmakers back at DIFF in following years with new projects."

A total of 47,500 movie-goers streamed into DIFF's screenings as of Wednesday, December 17, representing a significant increase in festival attendance over 2007.

"We are thrilled by high participation from the public and industry members alike, which means that there is a strong enthusiasm in Dubai for our mandate to showcase quality cinema," DIFF's Managing Director, Shivani Pandya said.

"We are looking forward already to the 2009 festival, and another five years with our warm, supportive and informed Dubai audiences."

We have a responsibility to our local community's we are proud to have contributed to putting Dubai on the world film industry map, and will do our utmost to continue to do so, she said.

The awards announced yesterday were aimed to recognise the best films in the festival. It was expanded this year to include a new Asia-Africa segment, which embraces films from emerging markets. Some of the entries were submitted from Afghanistan, Turkey, Cameroon and Kazakhstan.


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