Conditions of film-making in focus when Eat Sleep Die screened in Abu Dhabi
Emirati Film Maker Nujoom Alghanem told Intishal Al Timimi that she had just visited Malmö, Sweden, and was inspired to film there. Photo: Sherif Lasheen, Sayidaty Magazine
Intishal Al Timimi (middle), Program Director for Abu Dhabi Film Festival discussed the situation of today's film making with China Åhlander, Nujoom Alghanem and Nawaf Al-Janahi. Photo: Sherif Lasheen, Sayidaty Magazine
Saturday 13 October the Swedish film Eat Sleep Die was screened at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival where it is competing in the "New Horizons" category. In collaboration with Saab, the Embassy of Sweden arranged a reception where the Producer of Eat Sleep Die, China Åhlander, discussed film-making of today together with Emirati filmmakers Nujoom Alghanem and Nawaf Al-Jahani.
- My impression is that it is easier to shoot film in Sweden. There is less formal requirements and papers needed to be able to film. Here in the UAE, as a film-maker, one may spend a lot of time on administrative work, said Nujoom Alghanem, recently back from Malmö Film Festival in Sweden.
- I was so inspired there that I ended up shooting the main parts of a new short film. The rest of the scenes will be shot here in Abu Dhabi, she said.
Film financing, film education and how to find and form a good film team were other topics of the discussion:
- My different film budgets have been limited so far. In the beginning of my career I solved this by taking care of both scripts, producing as well as acting in my films. There is a misconception that there is a lot of funding available in the United Arab Emirates for film-making since there is a lot money here. But this is not the case. As film-makers we are looking for financing on our own and may apply for some co-financing from the public sector, said Nawaf Al-Jahani.
- We may be fortunate in Sweden having a national institute – the Swedish Film Institute – along with regional possibilities for co-financing. But in the end it all boils down to having a good script. Without the good stories there will be no films, said China Åhlander.