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Canadian film writer Debis Villeneuve was dubbed as one of the top ten filmmakers to watch during 2011. His latest film, Incendies, was mominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 2011.
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Damascus-born Eva Daoud is known for her 2010 film The New Cinderella. Daoud, who recently completed a course at New York Film Academy in Abu Dhabi, won Best Student Short Narrative for the film late year.\nShe lives in Bahrain, but has promised to make an appearance at this year's film festival.
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Furat Al Jamil is the executive producer of the 2005 Iraqi film Underexposure. The film, which follows a fictional film crew trying to film during the Iraq war, was the first to be shot in the country after the beginning of the Iraq War.
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Syrian screenwriter and producer Haitham Hakki has been involved in the making of two films, Basra and The Long Night. The latter, which he wrote the script for, won the Golden Award at the Taormina Festival in Italy and top prize at last year’s Osian’s-Cinefan Film festival in New Delhi. It also received honorable distinctions at the Oosian Festival in New Delhi, the Cairo Film Festival and the Arab Film Festival in Rotterdam. It was not allowed to be aired in Syria.
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Hammad Khan is a Pakistani writer-director based in London. He has produced three short films produced to date, under the banner of 'Exile Films', which include 'Explosions', 'Humzaad' and 'Samovar'. Hammad Khan was honoured with an award for British-Pakistani Professional Excellence by President Pervaiz Musharraf of Pakistan at an official ceremony in London in 2006.
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American-born, ten-time emmy award winning television director and producer Harry Hunkele is also set to attend the ADFF this week. He is best known for his direction of the feature documentary 'Back Door Channels: The Price of Peace'.
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Indian Ila Arun is a popular TV personality and actor. She recently gave a superb performance in the 2008 hit Jodhaa Akbar. She has also acted in critically acclaimed films such as China Gate, Chingari, Well Done Abba and Welcome to Sajjanpur.
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British film Prodcuer Leslee Udwin is most famous for her feature film and crossover Brit-com East Is East. She says she has to have an immensely vivid personal response to and relationship with the story, before she embarks on a new project.