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A. General Eligibility & Rules

1. Participation is free. Both local and international entries are welcome. Arabic films only.

2. Deadline for submissions: September 15, 2019. SUBMIT HERE.

3. Applicant must be aged between 17 and 30 years old.

4. Festival Committee will allow up to 2 entries by the same applicant, but not in the same category.

5. Production date not to exceed 2 years back.

6. All video links provided must be in MP4 format H264. 

7. Entries must contain English subtitles.

8. No film may use COPYRIGHTED material including music, TV shows, or movies.

B. The Categories:

To be eligible for entry, short films must fall into one of the following categories:

1. Documentary: a factual report on a chosen subject or idea.

2. Fiction: an original fictional story of any genre.

3. Animation: a story told by giving life to inanimate objects or character designs.

4. Web Series: fiction or non-fiction videos for release on the web.

5. Screenplay: an original story (not based upon previously published material). Screenplays will make part of an incubator, but won’t be in competition.

C. The Prizes & Awards:

1. Selected films will be provided with all the necessary details via email by end of October 2019.

2. The best film in each category (Fiction, Documentary, Animation, Web Series) will receive a cash prize as well as the HOPE AWARD trophy, presented at the Original Narrative Awards Ceremony to the director. There will only be one winner per category. The selected Screenplay applicants will be part of a screenwriting incubator during the festival days.

3. The directors of the selected films will be invited to Dubai to participate in the Festival days. Travel and accommodation provided by the Festival.

D. Eligibility by Category:

For the Documentary, Fiction & Animation categories:

1. Length of Fiction and Documentary between 5 and 25 minutes; Animation up to 25minutes; including credits.


For the web series category only:

1. The video submitted must be the pilot episode of a fiction or non-fiction web series.

2. The episode should be between 3 and 10 minutes for fiction, and from 3 to 15 minutes for non-fiction.

3. For non-fiction, the video submitted must be part of a series with a minimum of 3 produced episodes.

4. Series overview or bible must be available upon request during the selection process (September-October)


For the Screenplay category only:

9. Script should not exceed 20 A4 pages, with font specifications as such: 12pt, Courier font, standard margins.

10. Script completion date not to exceed 2 years back.

11. Story must be original (not based upon previously published material/ adaptations).

12. Format to be uploaded to the website - only pdf or docx are accepted.