Dubai International Film Festival : Showcasing of 156 films from 55 countries

International premiere of the film ‘Befikre’ will take place at Dubai International Film Festival at Dubai on December 8. Photo courtesy: YRK films

Movies buffs in Dubai have a big reason to smile. The eight-day Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) starts from December 7 and run till December 14. DIFF will showcase 156 films from 55 countries alongside a rich slate of Special Presentations, Red Carpet Galas and exciting community events.

The festival will span feature, non-fiction, short films and includes an astonishing 57 world premieres and international premieres, 73 MENA premieres, 12 Middle East premieres and nine GCC premieres.

In addition to this, the festival will also showcase an incredible line-up of contemporary Arab cinema, with 62 biopics, comedies, dramas and love stories from the Arabian Peninsula, Levant and North Africa.

Shivani Pandya, DIFF Managing Director. Photo courtesy:

Shivani Pandya, DIFF Managing Director, said “This year we have continued to strengthen the Festival’s position as a platform for Arab talent. One thing I am particularly excited about this year is the launch of the Virtual Reality cinema bringing festival goers the futuristic film experiences in 360 degrees.”

This festival has a special relevance for Bollywood and people of Indian diaspora living in Dubai. Indian actress Rekha will be presented a ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ while Ranveer Singh starrer ‘Befikre’ will be premiered during the Film Festival.  

Dubai is a big favourite among Bollywood producers, a frequent destination for film shooting. Earlier in the year, Shah Rukh Khan was chosen by Dubai tourism  as the brand ambassador of Dubai.

Also read: Shah Rukh Khan becomes brand ambassador of Dubai

In the opening ceremony of Dubai International Film Festival, three prestigious Lifetime Achievement Awards will be presented. In addition to India’s legendary actress Rekha who has worked in 180 films spanning a career of 40 years, American actor Samuel L Jackson and French Lebanese composer Gabriel Yared will be given awards. Samuel L. Jackson has worked in about 100 Hollywood films and Gabriel Yared is an award-winning composer  whose impressive filmography spans three decades.

Hindi movies fans, Indians and Arabs alike will look forward to the world premiere of ‘Befikre’, the Hindi romantic comedy from Aditya Chopra starring Ranveer Singh and Vaani Kapoor. The film celebrates love and focuses on living life to the fullest.

DIFF is preceded by the Singapore International Film Festival, which is running in Singapore currently and will be showcasing Anurag Kashyap’s thriller, Raman Raghav 2.0

Also read: 27th Singapore International Film Festival: 160 films to be screened

Inner view of Madinat Theatre where many films will be shown during Dubai International Film Festival. Photo courtesy:

DIFF will see films screened over eight days at the Madinat Jumeirah Arena, Madinat Theatre, Souk Madinat Jumeirah and VOX Cinemas, Mall of the Emirates and THE BEACH – opposite JBR.