Effat film festival to feature leading media figures

Effat University’s Showreel program is the university’s celebration of movies made by its female students and graduates.
Updated 03 April 2019
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Effat film festival to feature leading media figures

As part of its 20th anniversary celebrations, Effat University has launched its sixth annual Showreel program. With the slogan “The World Through Their Eyes,” Showreel is the university’s celebration of movies made by its female students and graduates from the Visual and Digital Production (VDP) Department, which is the first in the Kingdom to teach filmmaking.

The opening ceremony will be held on Thursday (April 4) under the patronage of Princess Lolowah Al-Faisal, vice president of the board of trustees and general supervisor of Effat University.

Dr. Haifa Jamal Al-Lail, president of Effat University, said: “We began working in this area six years ago and made efforts at the highest standards in order to become pioneers in teaching filmmaking in the Kingdom. We thank God that our efforts have been productive and that Saudi society has reacted positively to Saudi filmmaking.”

Osama Haykal, former Egyptian media minister and president of the Egyptian Media Production City, will be the keynote speaker at the event, which will be opened by actress Fatima Al-Banawi, an Effat graduate.

The guests of honor will be actress Maryam Al-Ghamdi from Saudi Arabia, film director Nawaf Al-Janahi from the UAE, Fatima Al-Husainan from the National Council for Culture, Arts and Literature in Kuwait, producer Sam Lahoud from Lebanon, Egyptian film critic Tarek Al-Shinnawi, Egyptian producer Mohamed Hefzi, and Abdulrahman Lahi, a Mauritanian producer and president of the council of the Cultural Resource Institution. 

The event will come at the conclusion of a week packed with public workshops presented by Effat University students at the Effat Library. 

The festival will begin with workshops by Richard Litvin, American producer and professor at New York University’s Tisch School of Arts, which has been in academic partnership with Effat University since 2016. 

The following workshops will be held: Screenwriting by Bahraini producer Bassam Al-Thawadi; Production, Financing and Distribution in Film Making by Sam Lahoud; and Cultural Management and Innovative Marketing by Abdulrahman Lahi.

A seminar entitled ‘The Art of Watching Films’ will be presented by Tarek Al-Shinnawi, in addition to a lecture on Kuwaiti cinema by Fatima Al-Husainan as well as a workshop on producing a creative vision by Nawaf Al-Janahi.

The festival will also include a seminar for his new book “From Makkah to Cannes” by Lebanese critic Ibrahim Al-Aris. The book deals with the movies of Saudi producer Abdullah Al-Mohaisen.

The Visual and Digital Production Department at Effat University was established in 2013 and became the first and only one in the Kingdom after being approved by the Ministry of Higher Education. The program is in collaboration with the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, and was further developed with the support of the New York Arts and Film School. 

The visual and digital production department at Effat University includes film production, animation, screenwriting, and interactive media.


Deal to create largest Arab digital marketing network

Updated 17 June 2019
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Deal to create largest Arab digital marketing network

ArabClicks, a performance-based e-marketing platform, has signed a joint strategic cooperation agreement with Basma Media, developer of omnesmedia.com. The two parties aim to build effective relationships and foster business connections between publishers and social media influencers on the one hand, and various e-commerce platforms operating in the Arab world on the other, thus laying the foundation stone for the largest digital marketing network in the Arab region.

The agreement was signed by ArabClicks Co-founder and CEO Mauro Romano, and Nasser Al-Sarami, CEO of Basma Media, at the latter’s headquarters in Dubai Media City.

According to the agreement, Basma Media will work with various publishers, media professionals and social media influencers in the Arab world to familiarize them with the mechanism employed by ArabClicks and then connect them to the platform. The intent is to benefit from the media content provided by these publishers to promote commodities and products marketed across Arab e-commerce platforms such as Noon, Namshi, Sivvi, Java, eBay and Tajawal, and benefit from sales commissions.

Romano said: “We are delighted to partner with Basma Media to reach out to the largest segment of media professionals and influencers in the Arab world. Through the partnership, we seek to capitalize on the exponential growth of e-commerce which has become a key business sector in the Middle East, where ArabClicks is supporting and assisting various businesses in enhancing their market share of the steadily growing electronic sales in the region.”

Al-Sarami said: “Over the past two years, we have been working at Basma Media to strengthen the omnesmedia.com platform with as many databases as possible for the benefit of media organizations and influencers. Today, the platform incorporates a database of more than 10,000 influencers and around 35,000 geographically diversified influential media people, in addition to 3,000 freelance gifted innovators working in various media production fields as well as 23,000 titles for various media products representing seven different types of mass media covering 35 countries all over the world, a record which makes us one of the key and largest media references on the Arab and international levels. And that’s the reason it would be easy for ArabClicks to deliver its message through omnesmedia.com in a successful way to the benefit of all parties concerned, including influencers and publishers as well as brands, rights holders and e-commerce platforms.”

Romano added: “With its innovative marketing tools based on transforming web content into a potential source of revenue, ArabClicks provides assistance to e-commerce companies to enhance their reach to various segments of society and to grow in the Middle East market, therefore, helping publishers do business and make easy money through web links, seamlessly and without introducing any changes to the published content or disturbing site users in any way.”