Composed of works from the Global South, including Saudi Arabia, the Arab world and beyond, the competition focusses on original, daring fiction, documentary or animated productions by emerging and established voices. The films compete for the Yusr awards, which offer cash prizes in directing, screenwriting, acting, and other categories. A jury of world-renowned filmmakers and film professionals will award cinematic work that pushes traditions, recognizing the innovators of independent filmmaking. The Yusr awards aspire to elevate new voices and encourage Saudi and regional filmmaking.
INTRODUCING SAUDI FEATURE AND DOCUMENTARY filmmakers and artists AT THE APEX OF AN energetic new wave of cinema. The showcase envisions a robust future for the national film industry. Diverse and dynamic, ENGAGING AUDIENCE AND FILMMAKERS, the program is AN EXCITING LOOK AT the voices shaping the LOCAL scene.
This is the home for international filmmaking icons and established voices making story-driven and entertaining films with a focus on craft and pace. The curated collection of independent and studio productions is brimful of Middle-East premieres, award-winners and festival favourites. Audiences will encounter trailblazers, adventurers, heroines – the characters who have lived a life less ordinary, inspiring us to do the same.
The pulse of Arab creativity presented in a carefully curated selection of short films produced or directed by the most exciting contemporary voices, all vying for a prize juried by their peers in this region-leading competition. Open to student directors, first-time filmmakers, and artists of any discipline from the Arab world, the works offer fresh takes and new ideas that tell compelling diverse and innovative stories in the short film form. It's where to discover something new and to connect with next-generation creators.
Freeform. No limits on duration. No borders. Yes to life. Tajreeb is dynamic, extroverted, and impressionistic. A punk program celebrating films that capture the zeitgeist and instigate change – these films could be viral moments that spark shifts and mark innovations. Designed for those who chase the restless and embrace the mercurial elements of film culture, Tajreeb is a hot-line to the best renegade creators. It doesn’t matter where the film has screened, where it lived before or how it came to find us – what matters is that rare inimitable vibe, the kind you have to see.
Digital experiments will transform the urban environment and transport audiences like never before. Encounter site-specific installations at the vanguard of cinematic innovation, existing somewhere between film and contemporary art. Commissions by dynamic digital artists will embrace Jeddah Old Town in a wholly unique program shaped by new takes on narrative form and technology – including powerful sound installations, holographic experiences, and 2-channel experiments.
Framing the art of cinema in an exciting new context, this proud, spirited focus on the classics includes acclaimed titles from the Arab canon and a selection of unmissable gems. See the masterpieces that have inspired generations of directors – many screened for the first time in Saudi Arabia. The special presentations will enhance knowledge and deepen conversation around these seminal works.
An expansive roundup of the year’s international festival hits – audience winners and critics' favorites, screening alongside a selection of experiential and escapist cinema chosen by the Red Sea International Film Festival team. Explore this panorama of films, fresh from the international circuit and racing for awards. Discover and find your next favorite – before they hit the cinemas.
Enchanting stories for younger audiences with a big appetite for film with a selection of films that will delight our future generation of filmmakers. Generations also features a program of activities and events taking the fun beyond the cinema to engage young audiences in the wonderful world of cinema.
The Red Sea International Film Festival will host a special screening of “Malcolm X” (1992) in the presence of its academy award-winning director Spike Lee. The film was the first Hollywood feature film to be granted permission to shoot in the holy city of Mecca and is among the most celebrated films of the 20th century. An epic biopic, it tells the story of a leading African American and civil rights activist, and one of the most remarkable figures in American 20th-century history. Denzel Washington stars, portraying three personalities in one body, Malcolm Little, Malcolm X, and El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz.