Eric Khoo’s Tatsumi was awarded with best film in the Muhr AsiaAfrica competition at this year’s Dubai International Film Festival (Dec 7-14), while Susan Youssef’s Habibi took best film in the Muhr Arab section.

Tatsumi also took the award for best composer, which went to Khoo’s teenaged son. The Woodsman And The Rain, a comedy drama directed by Japan’s Shuichi Okita, was presented with three awards in the Muhr AsiaAfrica competiton, while Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Once Upon A Time In Anatolia took two.

Habibi was one of three films that took all the prizes in the Muhr Arab competition, along with The Last Friday, directed by Yahya Alabdallah, and Hakim Belabbes’ Boiling Dreams.

The festival handed out more than 36 awards in its Muhr Emirati, Muhr Arab and Muhr AsiaAfrica sections, which came with cash prizes worth a combined $600,000.

The eight-day festival screened 171 films from 56 countries following a star-studded opening with Tom Cruise attending the screening of Mission:Impossible – Ghost Protocol, shot partly in Dubai.

On the second day of the festival, Bollywood stars Shah Rukh Khan and Priyanka Chopra dropped in to promote end-of-year release Don 2, which was partly shot in Germany. The fest also featured a focus on German cinema. Lifetime achievement awards were presented to Werner Herzog, Egyptian actor Gamil Ratib and Oscar-winning Indian composer A. R. Rahman.

Muhr AsiaAfrica Feature:

Special Mention: Chandani Senevirathne – August Drizzle (Sri Lanka)

Best Cinematographer: Gokhan Tiryaki – Once Upon A Time In Anatolia (Turkey)

Best Editor: Takashi Sato – The Woodsman And The Rain (Japan)

Best Composer: Christopher Khoo – Tatsumi (Singapore)

Best Scriptwriter: Shuichi Okita – The Woodsman And The Rain (Japan)

Best Actress: Phung Ho Hai Lin – Mother’s Soul (Vietnam)

Best Actor: Koji Yakusho – The Woodsman And The Rain (Japan)

Special Jury Prize: Once Upon A Time In Anatolia – dir: Nuri Bilge Ceylan (Turkey)

Best Film: Tatsumi – dir: Eric Khoo (Singapore)

Muhr AsiaAfrica Documentary:

Special Mention: Jai Bhim Comrade – Anand Patwardhan (India)

Second Prize: Ending Note (Death Of A Japanese Salesman) – Mami Sunada (Japan)

Special Jury Prize: The Land Beneath The Fog – Shalahuddin Siregar (Indonesia)

First Prize: This Is Not A Film – Jafar Panahi & Mojtaba Mirtahmasb (Iran)

Muhr Arab Feature:

Cinematographer: Raphael Bauche – Boiling Dreams (Morocco)

Best Editor: Susan Youssef & Man Kit Lam – Habibi (Palestine/US/Netherlands/UAE)

Best Composer: Le Trio Jubran – The Last Friday (Jordan/UAE)

Best Scriptwriter: Hakim Belabbes – Boiling Dreams (Morocco)

Best Actress: Maisa Abd Elhadi - Habibi (Palestine/US/Netherlands/UAE)

Best Actor: Ali Suliman - The Last Friday (Jordan/UAE)

Special Jury Prize: The Last Friday – Yahya Alabdallah (Jordan/UAE)

Best Film: Habibi – Susan Youssef (Palestine/US/Netherlands/UAE)

Muhr Arab Documentary:

Special Mention: No More Fear – Mourad Ben Cheikh (Tunisia)

Second Prize: Here We Drown Algerians - October 17, 1961 – Yasmina Adi (France)

Special Jury Prize: Halabja - The Lost Children – Akram Hidou (Iraq/Germany/Syria)

First Prize: Sector Zero – Nadim Mishlawi (Lebanon/UAE)

Muhr Emirati

Special Mention: London In A Headscarf – Mariam Al Sarkal (UK)

Second Prize: End Of December – Hamad Al Hammadi (UAE)

Special Jury Prize: Children – Mohammad Fikree (UAE)

First Prize: Amal – Nujoom Alghanem (UAE)

FIPRESCI awards:

Best Documentary: Marcedes – Hady Zaccak (Lebanon)

Best Feature: Habibi – Susan Youssef (Palestine/US/Netherlands/UAE)

du People’s Choice Award:


When Santa Fell To Earth – Oliver Dieckmann (Germany)