The Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) has announced that the December 2010 edition of the Dubai Filmmart assisted sales for a record 224 films from around the world, a 60% increase from its 2009 edition.

Cinetech, DIFF’s digital library, included 103 DIFF films, 43 films from the Gulf Film Festival and 78 Filmmart-recommended films.

Dubai Filmmart director, Ziad Yaghi, said: “The response to the 2010 Dubai Filmmart has been phenomenal, leading to our most successful year yet. The 60% increase and feedback from our partners reflects growing global interest particularly in Arab cinema, in addition to Asian and African cinema. We are proud to play a role in taking Arab cinema to global audiences, opening regional doors for international content, and to facilitate B2B trade.”

Deals concluded at the market include SBS Television Australia’s acquisition of Muhr Arab-winning Lebanese drama Stray Bullet by George Hachem and The House Under the Water by Sepideh Farsi. SBS is also considering Syria’s Damascus with Love and The Father and the Foreigner.

Earlier this year, Fortissimo Films acquired 678, the DIFF Muhr award-winning Egyptian drama, which has since screened at festivals in Rotterdam, Berlin, Geneva and New York. Fortissimo has sold the film to France (Pyramide), Spain (Golem), Portugal (Lusomundo) and Brazil (Imovision).