Hany Abu-Assad’s Omar won best film in the Muhr Arab feature competition at this year’s Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF), while Anthony Chen’s Ilo Ilo won best film in the Muhr AsiaAfrica section.

Abu-Assad also won best director in the Arab feature section, while Yasmine Raees won best actress for Egyptian filmmaker Mohamed Khan’s Factory Girl. Best actor went to Hassan Badida for Moroccan filmmaker Hicham Lasri’s They Are The Dogs, which also picked up the Special Jury Prize.

Special Mentions went to Mohamed Amin Benamraoui for Adios Carmen and to Moroccan actress Raouia for her roles in Rock The Casbah and Pillow Secrets.

Ilo Ilo was also a multiple prize-winner, adding to an already weighty awards stash, by taking best actress for Yeo Yann Yann’s performance. Best actor in the AsiaAfrica section went to Irrfan Khan for his role in Ritesh Batra’s The Lunchbox, which also won a Special Mention for Batra’s script.

Iran’s Fish & Cat picked up the Special Jury Prize in the AsiaAfrica competition, while best director went to Taiwan’s Tsai Ming-liang for Stray Dogs. A Special Mention also went to Souleymane Deme for his role in Mahamat-Saleh Haroun’s Grigris.

In the Muhr Arab documentary section, Oscar-shortlisted Egyptian doc The Square won best film, while Diala Kachmar and Carole Abboud’s Guardians Of Time Lost won the Special Jury Prize. Best film in the Muhr AsiaAfrica docs section went to Japan’s The Horses Of Fukushima, while Sara Rastegar’s My Red Shoes took the Special Jury Prize.

Best film in the Arab Shorts competition was Belgian-Iraqi title The Lost Voice, while Gas Is Over, directed by Kazakhstan’s Askhat Kuchinchirekov – who won best actor at DIFF 2008 for Tulpan – won best film in AsiaAfrica shorts. Both films are now eligible for Oscars consideration as AMPAS has added DIFF to its list of qualifying festivals in the shorts category.

Best film in the Muhr Emirati competition was Don’t Leave Me, from Abdullah Hasan Ahmed and Khalid Al Mahmood, while the Special Jury Prize went to The Neighbour, directed by Nayla Al Khaja.

The DIFF Young Journalist Award was presented earlier in the day to Neha Kalvani from Manipal University.


Muhr Arab Feature:

Special Mention: Mohammed Amin Benamraoui, Adios Carmen (Morocco, Belgium, UAE)

Special Mention: Raouia for her roles in Rock The Casbah and Pillow Secrets

Best Actress: Yasmine Raees, Factory Girl (Egypt-UAE)

Best Actor: Hassan Badida, They Are The Dogs (Morocco)

Best Director: Hany Abu Assad, Omar (Palestine-UAE)

Special Jury Prize: Nabil Ayouch, They Are The Dogs (Morocco)

Best Film: Waleed Zuaiter, Omar (Palestine-UAE)

Muhr Arab Documentary:

Special Mention: Zeina Daccache for Scheherazade’s Diary (Lebanon)

Best Director: Salma El Tarzi, Underground On The Surface (Egypt)

Special Jury Prize: Diala Kachmar and Carole Abboud, Guardians Of Lost Time (Lebanon, UAE)

Best Film: Karim Amer, The Square (US, Egypt)

Muhr Arab Short:

Special Mention: Camille Salameh for his role in Troubled Waters (Lebanon)

Special Mention: Ahmed Yassin, Children Of God (Iraq, UK, Hungary)

Best Director: Ali Cherri, The Disquiet (Lebanon, France)

Special Jury Prize: Haider Rashid, The Deep (Iraq, Italy)

Best Film: Bavi Yassin, Nore Maatala, The Lost Voice (Belgium, Iraq)

Muhr AsiaAfrica Feature:

Special Mention: Souleymane Démé for his role in Grigris (France, Chad)

Special Mention: Ritesh Batra for the screenplay of The Lunchbox

Best Actress: Yeo Yann Yann, Ilo Ilo (Singapore)

Best Actor: Irrfan Khan, The Lunchbox (France, Germany, India)

Best Director: Tsai Ming Liang, Stray Dogs (Taiwan, France)

Special Jury Prize: Sepehr Seifi, Fish & Cat (Iran)

Best Film: Ang Hwee Sim, Anthony Chen, Wahyuni A. Hadi, Ilo Ilo (Singapore)

Muhr AsiaAfrica Documentary:

Special Mention: Lynn Lee and James Leong, Wukan: The Flame Of Democracy (Singapore)

Best Director: Pin Pin Tan, To Singapore With Love (Singapore)

Special Jury Prize: Sara Rastegar, My Red Shoes (France)

Best Film: Yoshiko Hashimoto and Shigeki Kinoshita, The Horses Of Fukushima (Japan)

Muhr AsiaAfrica Short:

Special Mention: Cédric Ido, Twaaga (Burkina Faso, France)

Best Director: Sandeep Ray, Thin Arms (India)

Special Jury Prize: Halla Kim, The Way Back (South Korea)

Best Film: Askhat Kuchinchirekov, Gas Is Over (Kazakhstan) 

Muhr Emirati:

Special Mention: Mohammad Fikree, Girl & It (UAE)

Best Director: Muna Al Ali, Concealment (UAE)

Special Jury Prize: Claudia Corbelli and Greg White, The Neighbour (UAE)

Best Film: Abdullah Hasan Ahmed and Khalid Al Mahmood, Don’t Leave Me (UAE)


Short: Ahmed Yassin, Children Of God (Iraq, UK, Hungary)

Documentary: Zeina Daccache, Scheherazade’s Diary (Lebanon)

Feature: Mohammed Khan, Factory Girl (Egypt, UAE)

Emirates NBD People’s Choice Award:

Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee, Frozen (US)

Amal Al-Agroobi, The Brain That Sings (UAE)