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Doha Tribeca Film Festival Announces Competition Jury Led By Legendary Egyptian Actress Yosra

Oct 18, 2010 — Film Festival

12 October 2010 (Doha. Qatar) – The Doha Tribeca Film Festival (DTFF) today announced that internationally acclaimed Egyptian actress Yosra has been appointed President of the Jury for the 2nd annual Festival, October 26 – 30, 2010.

Yosra replaces previously announced Jury President Hany Abu-Assad who has had to step back from his role due to a delay in production with his latest film, The Courier, currently shooting on location in Louisiana.

Yosra will be joined by four other outstanding and diverse members of the film industry who comprise the inaugural jury – prolific Academy Award nominated actress, producer and director Salma Hayek Pinault (Frida, Ugly Betty), English actor, writer, and director Nick Moran (Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels),Indian director Bhavna Talwar (Dharm) and Bosnian screenwriter and film director of the Academy Award winning No Man’s Land, Danis Tanovic. Together they will choose the winners of the Festival’s Arab Film Competition: Best Arab Film and Best Arab Filmmaker who will each receive monetary awards of US$100,000.

Additionally, the festival has also added seven more feature films to its programme – including Andrew Lau’s Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen, John Curran’s Stone starring Robert De Niro and Edward Norton, Machete starring Jessica Alba, Danny Trejo and Don Johnson, Casino Jack starring Kevin Spacey and a special IMAX presentation of Paranormal Activity 2.

Two previously unannounced Indian films Rakht Charitra by Ramgopal Verma and Vikramaditya Motwane’s Udaan will also have their Qatar premiere at the festival and one new title, Champs Elysees Je t’aime, has been added to the Arab Short Film Competition. Tickets for all films at DTFF are on sale at box offices located at the City Center Cinema and the Villaggio Cinemas.

Yosra said: “I’m honoured to be the first Jury President of the Doha Tribeca Film Festival, and I want to thank my fellow jurors Salma, Nick, Danis and Bhavna for joining me. It’s a great privilege for me to work with them and I hope that together, we can fulfill the expectations of the filmmakers, and can contribute towards highlighting the Arab Cinema and further encouraging the talent from the region.”
DFI Executive Director Amanda Palmer said: “We are delighted Yosra is joining us in Doha as our first Jury President for DTFF’s first Arab Film Competition. Yosra supported us immensely in our first year as a festival, and in our second year it’s an honour to welcome this cinematic icon to preside over an international jury. This jury, Salma Hayek Pinault, Nick Moran, Danis Tanovic, and Bhavna Talwar, truly understand and reflect Doha’s mission to support new talent in the region, they have the right sensibilities, perspectives and expertise, and we’re looking forward to introducing them to a new generation of talent here in the Middle East.”

Yosra is one of the major cinema figures in the Arab world. Having held the lead roles in numerous films, she has been granted over fifty cinema awards. She has also starred in highly popular serial television dramas and released an album as a singer. Yosra represented the Egyptian actors to discuss potential improvements of their professional conditions with President Mubarak. As a UNDP good will ambassador, she actively fights against human trafficking, poverty and child abuse. She also supports street children, as well as various educational and environmental causes.

Academy Award nominated actress Salma Hayek Pinault has proven herself as a prolific actress, producer, director, and activist. She received an Academy Award Nomination, a Golden Globe Nomination, a SAG Nomination, and a BAFTA Nomination for Best Actress for the title role in Julie Taymor’s Frida. She produced the highly successful series Ugly Betty for American television and won an Emmy for her directorial debut, The Maldinado Miracle. Hayek continues to support, educate and fight for such causes as life-threatening maternal and neonatal tetanus; domestic violence education, awareness and prevention; as well as various humanitarian and environmental causes.

Forced to stop his university studies during the siege of Sarajevo during the Bosnian War, Bosnian film director and screenwriter Danis Tanovic went on a dangerous two-year mission to follow the Army closely with a camera crew to produce documentary footage. Tanovic’s first narrative feature, No Man’s Land, won a total of 42 awards, including the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 2001, the European Film Academy Award for Best Screenplay, and the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2002.

As an actor Nick Moran made his name with roles in hit films such as Guy Ritchie’s Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels. In 2008, Moran marked his directorial debut with Telstar, the story of songwriter and music producer Joe Meek which he co-wrote and directed for both stage and screen. The Kid, his second feature film as a director, screens at this year’s Doha Tribeca Film Festival.
Bhavna Talwar, the renowned and critically acclaimed National Award winning director, is amongst the new breed of Indian directors, blending Indian storytelling and sensitivity with Western technique and style. A Gucci Group Award Nominee at Venice, Bhavna’s debut film, Dharm, has received raving reviews from critics and the media alike, and was chosen as the closing film at the World Cinema Section at the Cannes Film Festival 2007.

A list of the additional titles in the lineup for the 2010 Doha Tribeca Film Festival follows:

Legend of the Fist: The Return of Chen Zhen, directed by Andrew Lau, screenwriters Cheung Chi Sing, Gordon Chan, Lui Koon Nam, Frankie Tam. (Hong Kong, China) – Feature Narrative
Donnie Yen continues a role originally played by legendary Bruce Lee in the 1972 film “Fist of Fury” and later adapted for a 1995 TV series which starred Yen. In this quasi-sequel, set in mid-century Shanghai, the martial arts hero infiltrates a Triad gang and becomes a caped crusader that features dazzling sets and amazing martial art fighting scenes.
Cast: Donnie Yen, Shu Qi, Anthony Wong, Huang Bo

Machete, directed by Robert Rodriguez, Ethan Maniquis, screenwriters Robert Rodriguez, Alvaro Rodriguez. (USA) – Feature Narrative
Left for dead after clashing with notorious Mexican drug kingpin Torrez, legendary ex-federale Machete has escaped to Texas, looking to disappear and forget his tragic past. But what he finds is a web of corruption and deceit that leaves a bullet in Senator McLaughlin and Machete a wanted man. From director Robert Rodriguez and co-directed by Ethan Maniquis, Machete features Danny Trejo, Jessica Alba, Michelle Rodriguez, Steven Segal, Don Johnson and Robert De Niro.

Stone, directed by John Curran, screenwriter Angus MacLachlan. (USA) – Feature Narrative
Robert De Niro and Edward Norton reunite in this intense drama that follows a convicted arsonist (Norton) about to be released from prison. When Norton’s wife (Milla Jovovich) attempts to seduce his veteran corrections officer Jack Mabry(De Niro) to expedite his release, Jack’s life is turned upside down.

Udaan ,directed by Vikramaditya Motwane, screenwriters Vikramaditya Motwane, Anurag Kashyap. (India) – Feature Narrative
Vikramaditya Motwane’s debut feature, “Udaan”, is the story of Rohan, a teenager who returns home after eight years of boarding school to find himself closeted with an authoritarian father and a younger half-brother who he didn’t even know existed. Rohan strives to pursue his dream of becoming a writer.
Cast: Ronit Roy, Ram Kapoor, Manjot Singh, Anand Tiwari, Rajat Barmech

Casino Jack, directed by George Hickenlooper, written by Norman Snider. (Canada) – Feature Narrative.
Kevin Spacey gives a stellar performance as high powered GOP lobbyist Jack Abramoff, a veteran schemer who shot to success, then crashed and burned in the George W. Bush era – creating one of the biggest scandals to hit Washington in recent years. Balancing both fact and fiction Director George Hickenlooper creates a wild and humorous ride along the underbelly of American politics.

Paranormal Activity 2, directed by Tod Williams, screenwriters Michael R. Perry, Oren Peli. (USA) – Feature Narrative
Join us for a special IMAX screening of the highly anticipated new film Paranormal Activity 2. Following in the tradition of such great horror classics as “The Exorcist” and “The Blair Witch Project,” audiences will be scared and transfixed by this latest addition to the genre. Sure to be one of the fall’s most exciting releases, director Tod Williams’ “Paranormal Activity 2” follows a young couple disturbed by a presence in their home that may or may not be demonic. The movie’s visual style adds an additional level of menace to the film, and is a perfect complement to the terrifying nature of the narrative. Starring Kate Featherston as the tormented young heroine, you will not want to miss a sneak peek of this thrilling and frightening new film!

Rakht Charitra, directed by Ram Gopal Varma, screenwriter Prashant Pandey. (India) – Feature Narrative
This film tackles the many conspiracy theories swirling around the 2005 murder of Paritala Ravi, the ruthless, powerful Indian politician who started as a communist like his father but soon joined the populist Telugu Desam Party. Made in Hindi, Telugu and Tamil, the crime epic is both blood-chilling and bloody.
Cast: Vivek Oberoi, Surya, Priyamani, Shatrughan Sinha, Radhika Apte, Kota Srinivasan Rao, Tanikella Bharani, Ashish Vidhyarthi, Zarina Wahab

Champs Elysees Je t’aime (Champs Elysees, I love you), directed and written by Mahdi Ali Ali. (Qatar, France) – Short Narrative
A female college student from the Gulf currently residing in the romantic French capital must make a decision: should she passively surrender to the traditional expectations of her family’s pre-arranged marriage plans, or should she open her life to true love in Europe?
Cast: Samir Talhaaoui, Gania Latroch

About Doha Tribeca Film Festival:
As the Doha Film Institute’s annual celebration of all things film, the Doha Tribeca Film Festival (DTFF ) is a community minded five day event that showcases the best of Arab and international films. The Festival also reflects DFI´s film financing and year-round educational arms with industry programs and filmmaker events designed to fulfill DFI´s mission of empowering storytellers and building a long term film industry in Qatar. Launched in 2009, the Doha Tribeca Film Festival reflects a successful cultural partnership between DFI and Tribeca Enterprises. Based on a mutual mission to promote the influence of cinema, the importance of community culture and the need for arts education, the Festival provides an annual platform that celebrates the wonders of film appreciation and entertainment from every corner of the globe.

DTFF 2010 is proud to be supported by: official airline partner Qatar Airways, Volunteer Programme official sponsor Virgin Mobile Qatar, and hospitality partners, Four Seasons Hotel, W Hotel and Grand Hyatt.