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Abu Dhabi Film Festival favourites charm Hollywood and Europe

  • Leviathan wins Golden Globes’ Best Foreign Language Film and Whiplash bags three BAFTA awards
  • ADFF curated films nominated for Oscars, Golden Globes, and BAFTA awards

As actors, filmmakers and film lovers anticipate the 87th Academy Awards (Oscars 2015) on 22 February this year, Abu Dhabi Film Festival (ADFF) celebrates the number of ADFF curated films that have made the nomination lists of international film awards in 2014 and 2015.

As one of the most anticipated international cultural events in Abu Dhabi and the region, ADFF’s high-quality film selections have proven to be a popular choice among awards committees, with11 films screened at previous editions of ADFF receiving recognition at world-class film awards including the 2015 Oscars, Golden Globes, BAFTA Awards, and the 2014 European Film Awards.

Ali Al Jabri, Director of ADFF, said: “We are pleased to witness these films succeed and receive the recognition they deserve. International accolades for films previously screened at ADFF demonstrate our commitment to a highly selective film curation process. ADFF’s reputation is growing internationally and this leads to a greater responsibility to deliver a programme that excites the local and regional audience.”

“Each year we aim to bring a diverse selection of films of the highest quality; some of which receive their world premieres at ADFF. The preparation has started on our programme for 2015 and we have, since the conclusion of ADFF 2014, visited the renowned international film festivals of Cairo, Carthage, Marrakech, Rotterdam, Sundance and Berlinale to find the best of the Arab and international film industry. ADFF 2015 is promising to be of the same high standard of previous editions,” he added.

Films previously screened as part of ADFF that have been nominated for international level awards include:


  • Ida for Best Cinematography and Best Foreign Language Film
  • Leviathan for Best Foreign Language Film
  • Timbuktu for Best Foreign Language Film
  • Whiplash for Best Picture, Film Editing, Writing, Sound Mixing, and Actor in a Supporting Role (J. K. Simmons)
  • Big Hero 6 for Best Animated Feature Film
  • Two Days, One Night (ADFF 2014) for Best Actress in a Leading Role
  • The Salt of the Earth and Virunga(ADFF 2014) for Best Documentary Feature

Golden Globes:

  • Big Hero6 (regional premiere at ADFF 2014 closing ceremony) for Best Animated Feature Film
  • Ida (ADFF 2013) and Leviathan (Winner of Black Pearl and Best Actor Awards at ADFF 2014)for Best Foreign Language Film
  • J.K. Simmons of Whiplash (ADFF 2014) for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture


  • Whiplash for Best Editing, Sound, Director, Original Screenplay, and Supporting Actor
  • Big Hero 6 nominated for Best Animated Film
  • Virunga and 20,000 Days on Earth (ADFF 2014) for Best Documentary
  • ’71 (ADFF 2014) for Outstanding British Film and Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer (Yann Demange (Director) and Gregory Burke (Writer))
  • Ida for Best Cinematography
  • Ida, Leviathan, Trash (ADFF 2014), and Two Days, One Night for Film Not in the English Language

On 8 February 2015, the BAFTA announced Whiplash the winner of Best Editing, and Sound as well as J.K. Simmons as Best Supporting Actor, while Ida won the BAFTA for Best Foreign Language Film. Moreover, Leviathan won Best Foreign Language Film at the Golden Globes in addition to Best Screenplay at Cannes Film Festival and the Black Pearl Award at ADFF 2014. Timbuktu was the only Arabic feature film to be shown in Cannes 2014, the movie then had its MENA premiere at ADFF.

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