World’s Leading Film Experts to Converge Online at Doha Film Institute’s Qumra 2021

 150 industry leaders to mentor 48 projects helmed by first-and second-time filmmakers

  • Professionals from 41 nations support the development of invited projects through virtual mentoring sessions, screenings wtiith feedbacks, and curated industry meetings


Wadad Hachichou Doha, Qatar; March 8, 2021: Qumra, the Doha Film Institute’s (DFI) annual talent incubator for Arab cinema will welcome over 150 international industry experts from 41 countries, joined by a number of prominent local organisations for the seventh edition of the initiative, taking place online from 12 to 17 March 2021.

Along with the Qumra Masters, guests include acclaimed film directors, producers, film festival directors, programmers, consultants, fund managers, sales professionals, acquisition heads, script experts, distributors, video on demand (VoD) platforms and broadcasters, and other industry professionals. Many have formed strong bonds to the annual event, which has become the premiere talent hub and project incubator for new voices and compelling stories in Arab and world cinema.

The Qumra 2021 programme includes 30 features, 12 shorts and 6 series including 5 new Qatari features in development. The sessions are presented in two parts: tutorials, workshops, consultations and one-on-one meetings for projects in development; and work-in-progress screenings and feedback sessions for projects in post-production. Qumra supports the script-to-screen journey and beyond, and with the inclusion of VoD and online platforms, allowing filmmakers to look beyond conventional platforms to take their projects to a wider audience.

Fatma Hassan Alremaihi, Chief Executive Officer of the Doha Film Institute, said: “We are extremely proud to support the outstanding Qumra projects participating this year, and incredibly grateful to the unfailing belief and commitment of the industry experts who share our vision of a vibrant global creative community. Despite a global pandemic, the team at DFI have successfully translated the commitment to supporting promising talent through an innovative new format of Qumra this year.

“From developing concepts to completed projects, Qumra expands on the Institute’s existing support activities by giving filmmakers unprecedented access to leading decision-makers from around the world to turn strong ideas into reality and accelerate the success of standout projects ready to launch. The programme’s growing acclaim is a testament to our collective contribution to realising the ambitious goal of giving volume to unheard voices and showing the world authentic perspectives from the region and the wider world.”

Project Mentors and Consultants:

Mentors advising the Qumra projects include internationally acclaimed filmmakers Elia Suleiman, Rithy Panh, Ghassan Salhab, Tala Hadid, Talal Derki, and Annemarie Jacir.

Consultants advising the 2021 Qumra projects include Paolo Bertolin, Violeta Bava, Editors Sebastian Sepuldeva and Benjamin Mirguet, Sales Experts Gabor Greiner and Aranka Matits, Script Consultant Joelle Touma, Producers Joslyn Barnes, Didar Domeri and Dora Bouchoucha, Project Coaches Matthieu Darras and Teresa Cavina, Documentary Consultants Emma Davies, Jihan Al Tahri and Bob Mooreand Marketing Expert Ashley Hasz.

Production Guests:

Production companies and producers taking meetings at Qumra 2021 include Bill Block, CEO at Miramax, Marc Lorber, SVP International TV Co-productions & Acquisitions for Lionsgate TVThanasis Karathanos, Producer at Pallas Film; Georges Schoucair, CEO at Abbout Productions, Catherine Dussart, Producer at CDProductions; Julie Goldman, President at Motto Pictures, Jason Kliot, Vice President and Executive Producer at Open City Films, and Kickstarter’s Senior Director of Narrative Film, Elise McCave.

Festival Guests:

Film Festival representatives from more than 15 leading events including Berlinale, Venice, Cannes, Locarno, Tribeca, Toronto, Sarajevo, International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, Vision du Reel, Malmo Arab Film Festival, Marrakech and others will participate in work in progress feedback panels for projects in post-production and industry roundtables.

Sales and Distribution Guests

International Sales and Distribution representatives from Alphaviolet, Autlook Filmsales, Bac Films, Best Friends Forever, Charades, Doc and Film International, Dogwoof, Elle Driver, Films Boutique, Hauts et courts, Heretic, Indie Sales, Jour2fetes, Luxbox, Memento International, New Europe Film Sales, UDI, Visit Films, Wild Bunch will participate in project feedback panel discussion and industry roundtables.

Regional distributors include Film Clinic, Front Row Entertainment, Metropolis Art Cinema, MAD Solutions and Moving Turtle.

Additional Industry Guests

Strong representation of film institutes and funds including Sundance Institute, San Francisco Film Society, Film Independent, Royal Film Commission Jordan, Moroccan Centre for Cinematography (CCM), Eurimages, Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée (CNC), Hubert Bals Fund, World Cinema Fund, Metaphora productions, Medienboard, MIBACT, AFAC – Arab Fund for Arts and Culture, Sorfond, Netherlands film Fund, Filmfoerderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein, The Ford Foundation and Metafora Production.

Qumra Series Guests

Continuing the Institute’s commitment to support Arab talents in evolving forms of creativity and new possibilities, Qumra 2021 presents the second edition of Qumra Series. Dedicated to exploring development of series format projects from the region, prominent leaders in serialised content and drama series markets such as The Gotham, Series Mania, European Film Market – Drama Series Days, and TV Drama Vision will be participating.

Streamers and Broadcasters

Streaming and broadcasting representatives in attendance include Netflix, Mubi, beIN, HBO, Nordic Entertainment Group, Sony Pictures Television Networks, Under The Milky Way, ARTE France Cinéma, and TRT.

Qatar-based organisations include teams from Al Jazeera Media Network, Qatar TV, AJ+.

Qumra Masters

2021 Qumra Masters: legendary French auteur Claire Denis; BAFTA and Academy Award® nominated cinematographer Phedon Papamichael; internationally celebrated director James Gray; Silver Lion winning film director and screenwriter Jessica Hausner, and Oscar® winning sound designer Mark Mangini.

The general public has the opportunity to access the most expansive edition of Qumra online by purchasing a Qumra Pass that offers the full Qumra Screenings and Qumra Talks programmes. Qumra Pass is open to all citizens and residents of Qatar and the MENA region, and applications will be processed on a first-come first-serve basis. The Qumra Pass is priced at QAR 500; students and Culture Pass by Qatar Museums holders can purchase it for a discounted price of QAR 350.

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