Sir Patrick Stewart, Cate Blanchett, Wahid Hamid, Irrfan Khan, Hend Sabri and Sonam Kapoor, amongst the stars who walked the DIFF Opening Carpet Youssra, Mona Wassef, Aida Riad, Abdel Rahman Abu Zahra, Safeya Al Omary, Ahmed Helmy, Ahmad Ezz, Menna Shalaby, Olga Kurylenko, Claes Bang, Vanessa Williams also in attendance, shining a spotlight on global cinema
Dubai, 7 December 2017: The Dubai International Film Festival opened its doors with a star-studded Opening Gala at the Madinat Jumeirah on December 6th. Local, regional and international talent graced the red carpet on the inaugural night of the eight-day festival for the MENA premiere of Scott Cooper’s Western masterpiece, ‘Hostiles’, starring Christian Bale and Rosamund Pike. The film was the first of more than 140 works from 51 countries to be screened at the 14th Festival.
Set in 1892, ‘Hostiles’ tells the story of a legendary Army Captain (Christian Bale), who after stern resistance, reluctantly agrees to escort a dying Cheyenne war chief (Wes Studi) and his family back to tribal lands. Making the harrowing and perilous journey from Fort Berringer, an isolated army outpost in New Mexico, to the grasslands of Montana, the former rivals encounter a young widow (Rosamund Pike), whose family was murdered on the plains. Together, they must join forces to overcome the punishing landscape, hostile Comanche and vicious outliers that they encounter along the way.
The 14th edition was honoured by the presence of HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The Red Carpet was abuzz with talent and entertainment as legends of the big and small screen came out to celebrate DIFF’s opening including Cate Blanchett, Wahid Hamed, Sir Patrick Stewart, Hend Sabri, Vanessa Williams, David Harbour, Youssra, Mona Wassef, Aida Riad, Abdel Rahman Abu Zahra, Safeya Al Omary, Ahmad Ezz, Menna Shalaby, Nayla Al Khaja, Mohamed Buali, Claes Bang, Sonam Kapoor, Tuba Büyüstün, Olga Kurylenko, Magdi Ahmed Ali, Nadine Njeim, Hani Al Shaibani, Bushra, Marwan Hamed, Basel Khayyat, Nisreen Tafesh, Dima Al Jundi, Mais Hamdan, Mai Hamdan, Fareed Ramadan, Dominic Cooke, Martina Gedeck, Ahd Kamel, Mehdi M. Barsaoui, Ahmad Abdalla, and Raed Andoni, before proceeding to the Madinat Arena for the screening of ‘Hostiles’.
DIFF’s Opening Ceremony recognised those whose work has made a lasting mark on the industry with Awards that recognized achievements for outstanding contributions to cinema. The four recipients at this year’s Festival are renowned Egyptian writer Wahid Hamed, for his prolific and impactful influence on cinema that will resonate for generations to come; legendary talent of stage and screen Sir Patrick Stewart, for a decades-long career of iconic cinema, celebrated Indian actor Irrfan Khan, whose unique character work has made waves across Indian and global screens and internationally acclaimed Australian actress and two-time Oscar winner Cate Blanchett.
The 14th edition of DIFF will see films screened over eight days at the Madinat Jumeirah Arena, Madinat Theatre, Souk Madinat Jumeirah and VOX Cinemas, Mall of the Emirates and THE BEACH – opposite JBR. Cinemagoers can buy tickets from the DIFF box office, which is now open www.dubaifilmfest.com and at the box office at VOX Cinemas Mall of the Emirates. Tickets are also available from the Madinat Arena, Madinat Jumeirah and from the Madinat Theatre, Souk Madinat Jumeirah.