Marking a milestone in Qatar’s film industry, Majid Al-Remaihi’s short film And Then They Burn The Sea has become the first film from Qatar to be nominated for an Oscar.
The film, a visual essay of love and loss as seen through the eyes of the filmmaker as he deals with his mother’s progressive memory loss, is produced by Doha Film Institute. He made the film under the mentorship of Oscar-nominated Cambodian director Rithy Panh and with the support of the Qatari Film Fund.
“This is an incredible achievement for a promising young Qatari and Arab filmmaker and marks a milestone in the evolution of the country’s film industry. Majid’s film, in consideration for an Academy Award, will inspire more young talent to pursue cinematic ambitions and make an imprint in the global film community through authentic stories that reflect our nation’s culture and traditions,” said Fatma Hassan Alremaihi, chief executive officer at the Doha Film Institute.
The film was screened at the 2021 Locarno Film Festival and won Best Short at Vienna Shorts and the Silver Tanit Award at the Carthage Film Festival.
“Seven years ago, I began to feel an endless sea drive a wedge between myself and my mother as her struggle with Alzheimer’s continued to chip away at her sense of being. I am quite honored to have this love letter to my mother receive this recognition as it marks a critical part of my life and honors the myriad contributions of mentors and collaborators that allowed for it to happen,” said the filmmaker.
Panh said Al-Remaihi’s recognition shows the “boundless potential” of the emerging Qatari and Arab filmmakers as they pave their journey to the international audience.
The 95th annual Oscars will be held on March 12, 2023, in Los Angeles.
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