14 Dhu al-Hijjah 1445 - 21 June 2024
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Eye of Riyadh
Business & Money | Friday 7 June, 2024 12:31 am |


Following a successful Cannes Film Festival, the Red Sea Film Foundation is announcing a leadership update and the transition of Mohammed Al-Turki from CEO to advisor to the Foundation. Mohammed Al-Turki will continue to support the leadership team while he returns to focus on personal projects and his career as an independent film producer and businessman. 


The selection of a successor is underway and in the interim, former board member of the Red Sea Film Foundation Mohammed Asseri will step in as acting CEO of the foundation. 


The Red Sea Film Foundation recently celebrated a landmark Cannes which saw four titles supported by the organisation selected by the festival. This included Tawfik Alzaidi’s Norah, a film that had its world premiere at the 2023 Red Sea International Film Festival and has now made history as the first Saudi film to be chosen to screen as part of the festival’s Official Selection, receiving a Special Mention in the prestigious Un Certain Regard section. Other supported projects at the Cannes Film Festival included To a Land Unknown, a narrative feature directed by Mahdi Fleifel [Director’s Fortnight], Animale, a film by Emma Benestan [Cannes Critics Week] and The Brink of Dreams, a drama by Nada Riyadh and Ayman El Amir [Cannes Critics Week]. The Brink of Dreams won the L’Œil d’or (Golden Eye Award) for Best Documentary at the 2024 Cannes Film Festival. 


Since its inception, the Red Sea Film Foundation has supported over 250 projects from Saudi, MENA and Africa and Asia, and championed its films across international festivals including Cannes Film Festival, Venice Film Festival, Toronto Film Festival and many more.


Jomana Alrashid; Chairwoman of the Red Sea Film Foundation said: “We celebrated a watershed moment in Cannes with the screening of Norah, which was a milestone both for the Foundation and for Saudi cinema as a whole. As we leave the Cannes Film Festival on a high, we look back at the past 3 years and the building blocks that have been worked on relentlessly by the team at Red Sea Film Foundation and share our gratitude for Mohammed Al-Turki who played a key role in leading the team and the Foundation to where it is today. We look forward to watching his career as one of Saudi’s most prominent film executives continue. We also look forward to welcoming new leadership to the Foundation alongside our existing team which remains spearheaded by our Managing Director Shivani Pandya Malhotra.”


Mohammed Al Turki, outgoing CEO of the Red Sea Film Foundation, added: “Working with the Foundation on these three editions of the festival and cementing Saudi Arabia’s place on the global stage of the film industry has been an honor and a privilege. We have achieved so much, and ahead of our fourth edition—we are in a position we could only have dreamed of a few years ago—which is why I feel now is the perfect time to transition. I am grateful for the ties we have built as a team and will continue to support my Red Sea Film Foundation family led by the Chairwoman of the Foundation Jomana Alrashid and its Managing Director Shivani Pandya Malhotra.”


The fourth edition of the Red Sea International Film Festival will run in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia from December 5th - 14th.


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