Posted on February 22, 2015

The Doha Film Institute today announced the public screening programme for the inaugural edition of Qumra which includes Abderrahmane Sissako’s foreign-language Oscar nominated Timbuktu which swept the Cesar Awards in France on the weekend taking home seven awards including Best Film and Best Director.

Qumra will take place in Doha on March 6-11 at Katara Cultural Village. Tickets go on sale Monday 23 February. The programme features landmark films by the Qumra Masters – a group of acclaimed actors and directors representing some of the leading figures in contemporary world cinema - alongside new voices, selected from films supported by the Institute’s grants and co-financing programmes. Each screening will be accompanied by a question-and-answer session with the filmmaker or Qumra Master presenting the film, building on the event’s mandate to provide access to mentorship, knowledge and inspiration for emerging talent.

The Qumra Masters screenings include: 2015 Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, Timbuktu by Abderrahmane Sissako (France, Mauritania, Mali, 2014); Pablo Larrain’s No, starring Qumra Master Gael García Bernal (Chile, USA, France, Mexico, 2012); Tales From the Golden Age (Romania, France, 2009), a compendium of five short films written and produced by Romanian New Wave master Cristian Mungiu and directed by him and four other filmmakers; Dariush Mehrju’I’s Leila (Iran, 1997) featuring a break-through performance by Qumra Master Leila Hatami; and An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker (Bosnia and Herzegovina, France, Slovenia, 2013) by Danis Tanović, winner of both the Jury Grand Prix and the Silver Bear for Best Actor at the 63rd Berlin International Film Festival.

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The new voices strand will present two narrative feature films, one documentary feature film and a programme of short films supported by the Institute’s funding programmes. They are: Memories on Stone by Shawkat Amin Korki (Iraq, Germany, France, Qatar, 2014); My Love Awaits me by the Sea by Mais Darwazah (Jordan, Germany, Palestine, Qatar, 2013); The Narrow Frame of Midnight by Tala Hadid (Morocco, UK, France, Qatar, 2014); and short films The Forgotten by Ehab Tarabieh (Syria, Qatar, 2012), Maqloubeh by Nicolas Damuni (Palestine, France, Qatar, 2012), Old Airport Road by Abdullah Al-Mulla (Qatar, 2014), Survival Visa by Nadia Rais (Tunisia, Qatar, 2014) and The Wall by Odette Makhlouf Mouarkech (Lebanon, Qatar, 2012).

Doha Film Institute Chief Executive Officer, Fatma Al Remaihi said: “We are very excited to share this outstanding collection of films during the first edition of Qumra. The collection of exceptional work by our Qumra Masters presented alongside some compelling new voices in cinema will provide Doha audiences with a window into some of the most creative, innovative and inspired filmmaking in recent years.” “I am delighted that each of the filmmakers and representatives from their creative teams will be in attendance, so that our Qumra audiences may gain an intimate insight into their work and creative processes.”

The Qumra Screenings are the public component of the event which also includes an intensive industry programme for the directors and producers behind 30 film projects at various stages of development. The Qumra Projects participants will be connected with leading industry mentors to assist them in advancing their work to the next stage and will also attend a series of master classes presented by the Qumra Masters. An additional 100 accredited industry delegates from the film and media industry in Qatar will also participate in selected components of the industry programme.

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Tickets go on sale online on Monday, 23 February at 10:00 AM and in-person from Tuesday, 24 February at 2:00 PM at the Doha Film Institute Katara Drama Theatre Ticket Outlet. For screening times, prices, ticket packages, ratings, box office hours and further information, please visit

*The Arabic term ‘qumra’ is popularly said to be the origin of the word ‘camera’, and to have been used by the scientist, astronomer and mathematician Alhazen (Ibn al-Haytham, 965-c.1040 CE), whose work in optics laid out the principles of the camera obscura.