For the 5th year, El Gouna Film Festival (GFF) continues to build on collaborations and partnerships with key industry players to empower and support Arab filmmakers and cinema in the region and internationally.
This year, GFF will partner with Filmlab: Palestine for the second edition of the Sunbird Stories program, which was launched in partnership with Cinephilia Productions and the Drosos Foundation.
A state-of-the-art development and production program, the Sunbird Stories was created by Filmlab: Palestine and Cinephilia Productions to instigate the growth of imaginative and thought-provoking films for young audiences across the Arab world.
For its 2nd edition, Sunbird Stories will develop five narrative short films, shortlisted from some submitted projects, by emerging Arab filmmakers in the genre of children, teens, family, and coming of age stories. In addition, Sunbird Stories will offer the filmmakers of the selected projects advanced project development and training and production packaging and financial and distribution plans.
Submissions for the program are now closed, and the selection process is currently in process. Sunbird Stories received 51 submissions from different countries across the Arab world as follows: 37 submissions from Egypt, five submissions from Lebanon, three submissions from Palestine, three submissions from Jordan, two submissions from Iraq, and one submission from Sudan. It is worth noting that 20 female filmmakers submitted their projects this year.
After the shortlisted projects are announced, a jury of industry professionals will organize a table-read for each of the five projects, followed by a Q&A session during the forthcoming edition of CineGouna Platform (CGP) set to take place October 16-21, 2021.
Winners will be announced at the closing ceremony of CGP, where two projects will be awarded, each $20,000 worth of production and post-production services offered by the Drosos Foundation.