Finishing touches being made to thrill the young and the young at heart, providing a springboard for thought-provoking masterpieces
UAE, Sharjah, 07th July 2013: All eyes - and cameras - of the young filmmaking community will soon be on Sharjah, where preparations are at an advanced stage for the Sharjah International Children Film Festival (SICFF). As the region's premier festival for films by, for and about children, SICFF is attracting participants from as far afield as South America, Europe and Asia, in addition to the Middle East.
Given that ever-evolving technology now enables youths to film, edit and upload their own high quality and high resolution short films using nothing more than their mobile phones, more children are discovering cinematic talents which they never knew they had. SICFF is a brainchild of FUNN, which supports media arts for young talents under the generous patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah, chairperson of the supreme council for family affairs.
SICFF aims to discover, nurture and promote creative talent on the global stage through intelligent, passionate and experimental films. This is allied with critically acclaimed international children's films of the highest caliber in such innovative genres as 3D animation, live action films, humorous cartoons, culturally inspired musicals and other multimedia forms. This will inspire the region's most promising talents to use originality, humor, lyricism and other tools as a mirror that reflects the society around them - enabling adults to see themselves from children's point of view.
Jawaher Abdulla Al Qasimi, Director of the Sharjah International Children Film Festival (SICFF), said adults should never underestimate what gifted young artists are capable of producing; elaborating: “Earlier this year at the world's most prestigious film awards, the Oscars, we saw the youngest ever nominee in history being nominated for Best Actress: Quvenzhané Wallis, who was only five years old when she auditioned for Beasts of the Southern Wild. Our emirate, our nation and our region is more than capable of producing our own success stories, because our youths are bubbling with fresh ideas - and there is no better incubator of talent than SICFF.”
Behind the scenes, organizers have been working in sync with the Ministry of Education to contact numerous schools and drum up excitement about the festival. In order to perfect the experience for the international audience, organizers have also been accumulating information about various films that could be potential crowd-pleasers. Meanwhile designs for promotional artwork as well as the festival program are all being polished up.
SICFF 2013 is expected to be a heavily attended funfair, due to its blossoming reputation as a playground for the imagination, and a feast for the audio-visual senses. The festival provides a ‘learning-by-doing' mentorship that empowers children with multimedia skills.
Summing up the forthcoming attractions, Jawaher Abdulla Al Qasimi concluded: “Films can give children an enjoyable escape from reality, and at the same time they help children to understand real life better. Therefore SICFF is transforming ‘real life' into ‘reel life' on screen. There has been a global debate on what sort of influence films are having on young viewers. SICFF is the perfect solution: we give children their own voice to make films about children, for children and with children. This positive influence will help them to grow into thoughtful, socially responsible and highly imaginative adults. We will continue to raise the bar in standards, because our young talents deserve nothing but the very best, and their only limit is their imagination.”
About SICFFSharjah International Children's Film Festival (SICFF) is a project of FUNN, established by the Government of Sharjah, under the generous patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi. SICFF is the first children's film festival in the country and Middle East, dedicated to enhance the media literacy of children and young people, foster children's creativity and showcase the very best in filmmaking for, by and about children and young people.
About FUNNFUNN (Sharjah Media Arts for Youth & Children) was established by the Government of Sharjah under the generous patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, wife of His Highness, the Ruler of Sharjah. It aims to nurture the future generation of creative artists in media and film, grooming them to their full potential and positioning them at the forefront of the global creative arena. FUNN strives to give young talents regional and global exposure through festivals, conferences and workshops, as well as strategic collaborations with diverse partners.