DIFF Buzz: Redmayne’s message, Redman’s moves and El-Sherif’s plea

Egyptian actor Nour El-Sherif, right, and Egyptian actress Mervat Amin arrive to the opening session of the 11th Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) in Dubai. Marwan Naamani / AFP
Egyptian actor Nour El-Sherif, right, and Egyptian actress Mervat Amin arrive to the opening session of the 11th Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) in Dubai. Marwan Naamani / AFP

While The Theory of Everything’s leading man Eddie Redmayne couldn’t make it to the opening night premiere, he did take time out to send a heartfelt video message to festival viewers.

The 32-year-old British actor is already being tipped for an Oscar nod for his assured portrayal of renowned cosmologist Stephen Hawking.

“I’m so sorry that I can’t be there,” he told viewers in a pre-recorded message, shown before the screening on Wednesday December 10.

“We’re so thrilled it’s opening the festival – for everyone involved this is a passion project.”

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DIFF’s opening night party was as glitzy, extravagant and spirited as anyone could hope.

From around midnight on, the most frenzied activity was all coming from the dancefloor, with the party people fed a steady stream of floor-fillers from an impeccably talented covers bands.

Among the setlist highlights were Pharrell’s hit hatrick of Blurred Lines, Get Lucky and Happy.

However the happiest moment (and man) of all came when the band opened up the stage for audience members to strut their stuff.

And who was the first to put a foot forward? None other than Dubai face-about-town Layne Redman.

The Dubai One presenter got deep into the groove with some pretty impressive footwork, sparking waves of adoring applause.

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Egyptian film legend Nour El-Sherif used his awards speech to make an impassioned plea about the relevance of cinema.

Speaking from the stage on opening night (Wednesday December 10) after picking up this year’s Arab-language Lifetime Achievement Award, the 68-year-old said: “I am concerned for the future of cinema in the world itself.

“I hope that in my time we don’t see it regress.”

Published: December 11, 2014 04:00 AM

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