When I first suggested the idea of holding an Arabic film festival in Dublin many people doubted there would be an appetite among the Irish for such an event. Thankfully when I mentioned it to our festival President, Jim Sheridan, he was excited by the idea and agreed to get involved. Immediately Joe Geoghegan of the Arab-Irish Chamber of Commerce came on board and the rest, as they say, is history.
Thanks to the help and support of our sponsors; Presenting Sponsors Dubai Duty Free and other sponsors including the Arab-Irish Chamber of Commerce, Dublin City Council, Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Tourism Ireland and Sunways.
The attendances during the festival quickly dispelled any doubts that there was an interest in Arabic cinema in Dublin and thanks to wide ranging international media coverage.
The aim of the festival is to provide a realistic perspective on Arab people, culture, art, history and politics. The festival will continue to serve as an important platform for Arab filmmakers to reach out to a wider international audience.