The inaugural edition of Sharjah Film Platform (SFP) will run from 18 to 26 January 2019 in Sharjah, and features screenings of over 140 films, as well as workshops and talks exploring both conceptual and practical topics within the film industry. The talks and workshops will be led by filmmakers, practitioners and film industry professionals.
Selected from an international open call, over 140 narrative, documentary and experimental films, both short and feature length, will be screened at the first edition of SFP this year. A number of these films will have their premieres at the festival, including the two newly-created films by the SFP Short Film Production Grant awardees. Laymoon, directed by Abdulrahman Al Madani (UAE), and Maryam, directed by Mohammed Al Hammadi (UAE), will be shown during SFP’s opening night on 18 January 2019 in Mirage City Cinema, Al Mureijah Square, Sharjah at 9:00 pm, following the opening reception at 7:30 pm, which is open to the public.
More than 40 countries and over 30 languages are represented at SFP. For example, Before I Forget (2018) is an Arabic-language entry from Germany, and And What Is the Summer? (2018) is an Indian film in Marathi. Both were shown at the 2018 Berlinale. Chooka (2018), which has previously been screened at the 2018 Edinburgh International Film Festival and the 2018 New York Film Festival, is a Persian-language entry from Canada.
In a collaboration with The Africa Institute, Sharjah Art Foundation will also present three restored films by Youssef Chahine to mark the tenth anniversary of the internationally acclaimed Egyptian director’s passing. Cairo Station (1958), The Land (1969) and The Sixth Day (1986) will be screened in three separate programmes at Africa Hall. This special focus on Youssef Chahine is programmed by Dr Salah M. Hassan and Hind Mezaina.
A jury of international filmmakers and directors will select awardees for the best narrative, documentary and experimental films. Winners will be announced during the closing ceremony on 26 January 2019.
Talks and Workshops
In conjunction with the film screenings, SFP will also feature a public programme of workshops and talks exploring the latest techniques and theories in film as well as recent developments in the film industry. Sessions will be led by local, regional and international filmmakers, practitioners and film industry professionals.
Running from 18 to 20 January in Gallery 6, Al Mureijah Square, the talks programme will include topics ranging from VR and future technologies to documentary filmmaking practices and funding sources in the MENASA region to legal requirements for the film industry. Speakers include filmmakers, screenwriters, critics for international publications, heads of international film festivals and academics.
A programme of hands-on workshops on the process of filmmaking, from screenwriting to lighting for film and video production to animation and visual effects will run throughout the festival in Gallery 2, Al Mureijah Square as well as off-site venues.
All talks and workshops are free and open to the public.
Tickets to Film Screenings
Tickets to the film screenings are now available for purchase online on Ticketmaster. They will also be on sale at the screening venues on the days of the screenings and at the box office in Sharjah Art Foundation’s Information Centre, Al Mureijah Square from 18 to 26 January.
The box office in Al Mureijah Square will be open from 12:00 pm to 10:00 pm from 18 to 25 January and from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm on 26 January. To purchase tickets on the day of a screening, visit the SFP box office or one of the four venues from 2:00 pm onwards.
SFP screenings are organised in 23 programmes, consisting of one or more films, with all programmes repeated during the week at different timings. Ticket prices are 15 AED per programme, but a discounted price of 8 AED per programme is available for bulk ticket purchases of 10 or more. For group ticket sales for the screenings at a discounted price, please contact email@example.com.
Films will be screened every day at 3:00 pm, 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm in one of the four venues. Doors will open 15 minutes before the screening of each programme and close 5 minutes after the designated screening time. Please note that all seating is on a first-come, first-served basis and cannot be reserved in advance.
To view the full programme, visit sharjahart.org.