Closing Press Release 2016

4th Silk Road Film Festival, Dublin 10-14th March 2016

The Silk Road International Film Festival returned to Dublin, Ireland for its fourth edition.

Between 10th and 14th, March, the Silk Road Film Festival screened over a hundred films for the fourth time across the city of Dublin – an exclusive array of Asian, Arab, Persian, Middle Eastern, African, Mediterranean and European cinema.

Inspired to forge connections between culture and facilitate international contact between filmmakers the Festival’s directors, also filmmakers, Carla Mooney, Steinar Oli Jonsson & Delwyn Mooney founded the Silk Road Film Festival, striving to incite fruitful collaborations at the intersection of cinema, arts and business.

The Silk Road Film Festival (SRFF) welcomed productions from regions, which were once part of the historical network of ancient trade routes of the great Silk Road spanning from Europe – across to China. The 2016 edition will showcase a rich diversity of features, documentaries, animations, short and student films.

At this year’s edition there was a documentary panel discussion supported by Screen Training Ireland after the Irish premiere screening of “The Tainted Veil” which discusses the veil in history and the many meanings behind it. The panel included Rachel Lysaght – award winning producer (One Million Dubliners, The Pipe, dreams of a Life, Patricks Day), Aoife Kelleher (One Million Dubliners, Nice Stone Lighter) and the award winning documentary director, Ovidio Salazar-Director of “The Tainted Veil” documentary.

The discussion panel was chaired by Paula Kehoe an award winning documentary director (An Dubh ina Gheal, Deargdhúil). In addition, there was a seminar on “Film Business in the Arab World” presented by Alaa Karkouti of the Arab Cinema Center. Karkouti discussed opportunities between Ireland and the Arab world, with a special focus on co-production and distribution. Supported by Trinity College Dublin, Arab Cinema Center, the Arab Irish Chamber of Commerce and Cardel Entertainment.

In the lineup of films for the 4th Edition of Silk Road Film Festival the festival celebrated many Irish Premieres which included multi awarding winning Turkish Film “Sivas” directed by Kaan Müjdeci, which was selected as the Turkish entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 88th Academy Awards and won the Special Jury Prize at the 71st Venice International Film Festival. Moroccan film “Starve Your Dog” directed by Hicham Lasri was nominated for the Muhr Award “Best Fiction Feature” at the Dubai International Film Festival 2015. “Golden Kingdom” directed by Brian Perkins is a Buddhists coming of age film which fuses docu-style observation with moving spiritualism. “Utopia” is an Afghan drama film directed by Hassan Nazer and was the official entry of Afghanistan for Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards 2016.

Documentaries included Leonardo Cinieri Lombroso´s “Southeast Asian Cinema – When the Rooster Crows” is a voice of diversity reaching for change in the cinematic world of the smaller nations of Asia. Palestinian documentary ‘’Roshima’’ – “an elderly Palestinian couple has a final standoff against Israeli authorities to maintain their natural lifestyle in Roshima; the last natural valley in Haifa.”

A highlight of the short films was “Waves ‘98” directed by Ely Dagher, a Lebanese animation which was awarded Palme D’or at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival.

Besides creating a platform for international filmmakers to network and promote their work, the Festival’s directors aspire to give student filmmakers an opportunity to showcase their work on an international scale and have thus established a student filmmaking competition as part of Film Festivals Cinergy. This is a union of film festivals around the world, aiming to promote talents in filmmaking and to foster cross-cultural collaboration. Each year Irish student filmmakers have an opportunity to win a prize to travel to Notre Dame University International Film Festival, Lebanon to screen their films in competition. This year Joe Carroll of the National Film School of Ireland, IADT won for his film “Cavemans” and Sean Donnellan of Dublin Institute of Technology School of Media, Ireland. Both students will travel to Notre Dame University International Film Festival in Lebanon to participate in international competition at the festival in November.

International special guest filmmakers and festival directors attended from Iran, Egypt, United Arabs Emirates, Lebanon, United States of America, United Kingdom, Austria, Sweden, Turkey, Philippines and France.

SRFF TEAM