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MEIFF 2008 announces winners of Black Pearl Awards

The official Black Pearl Awards ceremony for the second annual Middle East International Film Festival (MEIFF), organized by the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage ADACH) was presented at Emirates Palace on Sunday 19th October.

The awards were the culmination of ten action-packed days of cinema, with 152 movies and 186 screenings shown in five Abu Dhabi venues. A total of 76 feature films and 34 short films from over 35 countries competed for the MEIFF 2008 Black Pearl Awards.

Winners of the US$1 million MEIFF 2008 Black Pearl Awards were announced at the festival’s closing night ceremony directed and choreographed by Otis Sallid.

Director Ridley Scott’s latest film ‘Body of Lies’ made its Middle East premiere at MEIFF’s Closing Night Gala, attended by star of the film, Michael Gaston, along with British actor Joseph Fiennes (Shakespeare in Love) and well-known French actress Eva Green (Kingdom of Heaven, Casino Royal). A host of Arabic personalities also attended including Yousra, Elham Shaeen, Solaf Fawakherji, Mostafa Shaban, Abdulaziz Al Jazem and Khaled Saleh.

MEIFF 2008 Black Pearl Award Winners:

The Black Pearl for Best Narrative Film - $200,000
Director: Steve Jacobs. Producers: Anna Maria Monticelli, Emile Sherman, Steve Jacobs

The Black Pearl for Best Documentary – $150,000
Director: Gonzalo Arijon. Producer: Marc Silvera

The Black Pearl Special Jury Prize- $125,000
Youssou N'Dour: I Bring What I Love
Director and Producer: Elisabeth Chai Vasarhelyi

The Black Pearl for Best Actress - $75,000
Fawzia: A Special Blend
Actress: Ilham Shaheen

The Black Pearl for Best Actor - $75,000
Wild Blood
Actor: Luca Zingaretti

The Black Pearl for Best Artistic Contribution - $75,000
Laila’s Birthday
Screenwriter: Rashid Masharawi

The Black Pearl Audience Choice Award
Saving Luna
Co-Directors: Suzanne Chisholm & Michael Parfit. Producer: Suzanne Chisholm

The Black Pearl for Best Narrative - Short Film- $75.000
The View
Co-Directors: Hazim Bitar & Rifqi Assaf. Producer: Amman Filmmaker Cooperative

The Black Pearl for Best Documentary – Short Film- 75.000$
Director: Yasmin Fedda. Producers: Jim Hickey & Robin Mitchell

The Black Pearl for Best Animation- Short Film- 75.000$
Director: Karla Casteneda. Producer: Luis Tellez

Best Advertisement – Cultural Category - 25.000$
Anti Slavery
Director: Eric Lynne. Producer: Partizan Films – Midi Minuit

Best Advertisement – Consumer Category - 25.000$
Director: Traktor. Producer: Partizan Films – Midi Minuit

Best Advertisement – Artistic Contribution - 25.000$
Great Pretender
Director: Patrick Bergh. Producer: Partizan Films – Midi Minuit

The Black Pearl for Best Narrative – Student Films – 25.000$
Director: Burhan Qurbani. Producer: Fabian Gasmia

The Black Pearl for Best Emerging Filmmaker – Student Films- 25.000$
Director: Serena Abi Aad. Producer: IESAV

The Black Pearl for Best Animation – Student Films – 25.000$
Director: Julian Nazario Vargas. Producer: Rube Baggerud

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