Tarak Ben Ammar, the celebrated Tunisian film producer, announced today the launching of a new competition, designed to promote the talents of young filmmakers in the country.
The Tunisian Mobile Film Festival will ask teams of budding filmmakers to shoot a one-minute movie on a mobile phone and upload it to the Internet.
Teams of up to six people under the age of 30 and residing in Tunisia are eligible to enter.
The ten best entries will be chosen by a jury and the winning teams will participate in a 3-day workshop with professionals from the Tunisian film industry, including Ben Ammar, at the Empire Studio film sets near the resort city of Hammamet.
During the workshop teams will develop, shoot and edit a 3-minute film, which in turn will be judged by a jury and the public. These films will also be made with cellphones, to be provided by the organizers.
Ben Ammar argued that while there has been a lot of creative potential in the country, young Tunisian filmmakers are stymied by a lack of opportunity to develop their skills. The competition is “a way to uncover and nurture new talent, through new technologies,” he said.
He added that young people’s familiarity with smartphones and their accessibility would encourage more people to express themselves.
“Talent can’t rest hidden in the closet: technology can help bring it out.”
Young filmmakers will be able to find more information on the first stage of the competition by accessing the website www.tmff.tn from April 10-20 when the competition closes. The workshop for winning teams will run from April 27-29. All entries must feature the theme of the competition, which in its inaugural year is “the Tunisian flag.”
In related news, Ben Ammar also announced that the back-lot of the Empire studios in Hammamet will be open to the public on May 13 for a free festival of street art and culture. Named “Sunny Street Day,” the event will feature street art, music, hip hop battles, as well as competitions for BMX, skaters and rollerbladers.