The mission of the Arab Film Festival (AFF) is to enhance public understanding of Arab culture and to provide alternative representations of Arabs that contradict the stereotypical images frequently encountered in the American mass media. The Arab Film Festival screens films from and about the Arab World that provide realistic perspectives on Arab people, culture, art, history and politics. We caught up with the Arab Film Festival and asked them a couple questions about the company.
When, why and how was your company started?
Established in 1996 as the first in the US, the Arab Film Festival (AFF) is the largest independent annual showcase of Arab films and filmmakers in the country. The Festival has an international standing and is considered one of the most important Arab film festivals outside the Arab world. The AFF strives to present the best of contemporary films that illuminate Arab lives through authentic narratives and images and provide insight into the beauty and complexity of the Arab world.
This year’s festival, the 17th annual edition, will be held in San Francisco (Oct 10-13), Los Angeles (Oct 18-21), Berkeley (Oct 25-27) and San Diego (Nov 15-17) with additional programming at local schools and nearby communities.
Festival Builds Cultural Bridges and Promotes Tolerance and Harmony International events of the last decade cast a spotlight on the Arab world, resulting in greater interest in the region and its people. This keen curiosity creates an opportunity for the Arab Film Festival and its mission of exposing California audiences to Arab culture and contemporary life through the medium of film. The stories these films tell deepen our sense of connection with the Arab world and our understanding of the universality of the human experience. Audiences discover that they are able to connect personally to the Arab experience through universal themes such as love, loss, despair, and-most important of all-hope.
What is like to work there? Why should someone want to intern with your company?
We’re a small, non-profit arts organization doing some great things, not just locally but on the international scene. From prominent Arab filmmakers in the office to national leaders, yet our office is as casual and laid-back as you can get. Flexible work schedule, chances to work remotely, passes to local arts events, an Executive Director that comes in dressed in shorts, we provide a really fun and relaxed work environment.
Any fun or interesting facts about the company?
We’re launching an Education Program that’s got people in our community very excited. New partnerships with the SF Film Society, KQED and 7×7 are also leading the way to an exciting direction for the organization.