The fifth edition of the festival will have an increased focus on Arab film-makers; producers awards added to competition sections.

Producers are to be recognised for the first time at the fifth edition of the Abu Dhabi film festival (ADFF), which takes place from October 13-22.

A new award – Best Producer from the Arab World –is being added across the festival’s competition sections, as well as a series of Special Jury Awards for Arab film-makers.

In other changes, the festival’s New Horizons Competition, which was launched in 2010 for first and second-time narrative and documentary features, will now include only narrative films in order to make room for more fiction filmmaking from new Arab and international directors. 

Documentary filmmakers will still have a place in the ADFF program with an award in the Documentary Competition for Best New Documentary Director.

ADFF’s environmental section - What in the World Are We Doing to Our World? - will also become a competitive section with a prize of $15,000, awarded to the film that shows the best potential to broaden public awareness of environmental issues.

The total of the festival’s cash prizes remains at over $1 million.

The new awards structure will “reinforce one of ADFF’s central aims of presenting the work of international and Arab filmmakers together in competition on equal footing,” according to a statement from the festival.  

Submissions are now open for the festival, with a deadline for entries of July 1.