Aflamnah, the MENA region’s first crowdfunding platform for creative ideas, has announced that two films that crowdfunded on its platform are part of the official competition within the 10th Dubai International Film Festival. The first film is the feature documentary Searching for Saris by Palestinian Director Jinan Coulter, which successfully raised USD $21,330 through the Aflamnah platform at the post-production phase […]
Aflamnah, the MENA region’s first crowdfunding platform for creative ideas, has announced that two films that crowdfunded on its platform are part of the official competition within the 10th Dubai International Film Festival.
The first film is the feature documentary Searching for Saris by Palestinian Director Jinan Coulter, which successfully raised USD $21,330 through the Aflamnah platform at the post-production phase of the process. The film is also supported by DIFF‘s post production support program Enjaaz.
Commenting on her successful crowdfunding experience, Coulter said: “Aflamnah offered me a fantastic opportunity to raise the additional funds I needed for my film – a film on a subject specific to this region and its history. It really is an invaluable platform for Middle Eastern filmmakers and creative talent to get their projects funded, with the added bonus that everything you raise, you keep. I’m very grateful that Aflamnah exists and hope that more people will take advantage of it and help to spread the word! We need these kinds of initiatives in our region!”
Competing in the Muhr Arab Documentary competition, Searching for Saris tells the story of Saris, a Palestinian village in Jerusalem that was ethnically cleansed in 1948 during the creation of the state of Israel. Today, it is inhabited by Israelis only. The film is a journey that is physical and metaphoric. It is a search of the legacy of Palestinian dispossession in 1948, and its still unfolding chapters.
The second film in competition is The Brain that Sings, another feature documentary by Emirati Director Amal Al-Agroobi. Through Aflamnah, the film managed to raise USD $15,160, which then attracted additional funding from twofour54 once Aflamnah presented the project to them. The film chose to crowdfund in the development and pre-production phase and would have not been able to go into production without the funding raised on Aflamnah. The Brain That Sings is also supported by ADMAF (Abu Dhabi Music and Arts Foundation).
Competing in the Muhr Emirati competition, the film is told from the perspective of six-year-old Khalifa and eighteen-year-old Mohammed. The Brain that Sings follows the journey of these two young boys with autism in the UAE, and the introduction and effect of music therapy on their lives. The film aims to raise awareness of Autism in the region and combat the stigma associated with special needs within the Emirati and Arab community.
Commenting on her experience of Aflamnah, Amal Al Agroobi said: “I couldn’t imagine life before Aflamnah if I really thought about it now. It’s just become the go-to place for creatives to get their stuff funded; it was only through Aflamnah that the film was able to gain community support and awareness. The Brain That Sings did so well and is proud to be the first Emirati project on the site taking home a massive cake that everyone can celebrate, taste, eat and enjoy”.
Aflamnah is also participating in a panel discussion called “How to Fund Your Film?” at the festival. This will take place on December 9th, 2013 at 9.30 am. The panel discussion aims at presenting practical and innovative ideas to maximize available resources in film funding, and give filmmakers insider tips on the best chances to capitalize on to succeed.
Launched last year, Aflamnah is the first crowdfunding digital platform for creative ideas in the MENA region. Through only one year, Aflamnah has successfully hosted 47 projects, raised around USD $200,000 and became the go-to platform for crowdfunding creative ideas in the MENA region. Projects and contributors from across the world have become involved with Aflamnah. Professionals, rising stars and students have successfully raised the much-needed funds that turned dreams into reality and built communities and fan-bases, that have supported a project through its lifecycle.
Crowdfunding is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet: musicians, filmmakers, and artists have successfully raised funds and fostered awareness through crowdfunding.