Saudi film initiative expands development programme to wider Asia

Initiative by Red Sea Labs is open to submissions until the end of January

The Lodge will hold its film workshops across various locations in Saudi Arabia, including AlUla. AFP
Powered by automated translation

Saudi Arabia's Red Sea Labs is accepting submissions for the fifth iteration of The Lodge. The long-term residency programme has been developed in collaboration with Torino FilmLab and sponsored by Film AlUla.

Deadlines have been extended until January 20 for Saudi projects, and January 30 for Arab, African and Asian projects.

The initiative, which falls under the umbrella of the Red Sea International Film Festival, is known for bolstering feature films from Saudi Arabia, the Arab world and Africa. However, it is now being expanded to include submissions from the wider Asian continent. A total of 16 projects will be selected as part of the programme. The Lodge is open to submissions until Sunday.

“Continuing our journey of expanding and evolving the Red Sea Foundation’s programmes, we are pleased to announce the first expansion of one of our industry programmes, The Lodge, as it broadens its offerings to promising cinematic voices from Asia,” Shivani Pandya, managing director of the Red Sea Film Foundation, said.

“It is a strategic move aimed at bolstering our cinematic communities' presence on the global stage, fostering cultural exchange, and enriching the cinematic landscape worldwide.”

The Lodge comprises workshop and mentorship programmes that are designed to help filmmakers develop their projects. The residency programme will offer training across script development and film production, including financing, sales and marketing.

The workshops will take place across various locations within the kingdom, including in AlUla. The programme will kick off with a prelude workshop exclusive for the Saudi teams.

Following the training, The Lodge filmmakers will have the opportunity to present their projects at the Red Sea Souk during the 2024 Red Sea International Film Festival.

“The Lodge continues to empower emerging filmmakers and contribute to diversifying and enriching the global cinematic scene,” said Ryan Ashore, head of The Red Sea Labs.

“We are looking forward to welcoming the new talents from Asia with the Arab world, and Africa, starting from our retreat in AlUla alongside our partners, immersing them in a unique experience that refines their inspiring narratives through collaborative initiatives that transcend geographical borders.”

Updated: January 10, 2024, 7:18 AM