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25 February 2024

Latifa bint Mohammed visits 3rd edition of ‘Al Marmoom: Film in the Desert’ festival

By E247

Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) and Member of the Dubai Council, visited the third edition of the ‘Al Marmoom: Film in the Desert’ festival, organised by Dubai Culture at Al Marmoom Desert Conservation Reserve. The festival, a key highlight of the #DubaiDestinations winter campaign, seeks to empower the local cinema industry and encourage creative talents by supporting filmmakers, enabling them to showcase their works and share their visions, experiences, and knowledge with audiences.


With events and activities held as part of the festival continuing until 21 January, over 70 films will be showcased, while over 30 workshops and more than ten diverse panel discussions and talks will be organised by Dubai Culture, witnessing the participation of distinguished speakers, directors, and specialists from the film industry.

Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed affirmed the importance of Al Marmoom: Film in the Desert festival in enriching Dubai’s cultural and artistic movement. She also underscored its positive impact on the film sector, noting its valuable addition to the local film scene and its role in stimulating creatives and enhancing the sustainability of the film industry.


“The festival reflects Dubai’s modern identity and cultural and creative richness, representing an innovative platform for creative individuals that contributes to developing their skills and developing their creative tools. It provides seasoned and emerging creatives with opportunities to exchange artistic experiences and benefit from the latest methods and creative trends in this field, allowing for intellectual dialogue among different cultures to take place, highlighting our identity, traditions and local culture,” Her Highness said.

The festival, by means of its array of activities, supports the cultural and creative industries and enhances cultural tourism, enabling creatives to explore the distinctive opportunities that Dubai provides them in its mission to be a global centre for the film industry, Her Highness added.

Art exhibitions

During her visit, Her Highness was briefed on the art exhibitions held alongside the festival and inspired by the history of cinema, including the ‘Cinematic Masterpieces’ exhibition showcasing a unique collection from His Excellency Mohammed Ahmed Al Murr, Chairman of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Library Foundation, and the ‘Stories at One with Nature’ exhibition that includes artworks and photographs by a group of talented young creatives from Akaas Visual Arts besides artworks by People of Determination from the Rashid Center for People of Determination.

The festival is being held under the theme ‘Stories at One with Nature’ and features a diverse programme aimed at providing Emirati citizens and residents with an exceptional cultural experience. Attendees will gain access to more than 70 films from Emirati, GCC, Arab, and international filmmakers, of which 56 are part of the Al Marmoom Short-Film Competition, which will see a distinguished panel of experts from the UAE and regional film sector evaluate the entries.

In addition, several international and Arab films nominated for Academy Awards are being screened for the first time in the region, including the documentary film (Wild Dubai) produced by The Government of Dubai Media Office, and a collection of documentaries produced by the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre, among others.


The festival also features over 30 workshops addressing everything from the basics and techniques of preparing actors, methods for calculating film budgets, the difference between theatrical and cinematic scripts, photography, lighting, montage and colouring, documentary making, the elements of short and children’s films, to the importance of Arabic dubbing in international cinematic works, among other subjects. Over 10 diverse talks and panel discussions will also be organised, witnessing the participation of speakers, directors, and specialists from across the film industry who will address the challenges facing creatives in the ‘the seventh art’ field as well as many other industry-related topics.

Musical and heritage performances

The festival will also feature musical and heritage performances highlighting the beauty of the Emirati culture and traditional crafts such as Al Talli and Al Khoos, reflecting the Authority’s commitment to showcasing Emirati traditions and enhancing their profile in artistic and creative activities throughout the emirate.

The festival is held in partnership with a number of public and private entities in Dubai, namely Dubai Film And TV Commission as Lead Partner; Proudly from Dubai, an initiative of Brand Dubai, as F&B Partner; Dubai Media Incorporated, Awaan TV, and UAE Media Council as Media Partners; Dubai Municipality, DEWA, Dubai Police, Dubai Corporation For Ambulance Services, Dubai Civil Defence, Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, and Hala Ride (Careem) as Supporters; and VOX Cinemas, Sandooq Al Watan, Vision3000, Gamma Engineering, Raindance, Rashid Center for People of Determination, Al Jalila Cultural Centre for Children, Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre, and Akaas Visual Arts as Content Supporters.