Open Call: SAFAR Futures Mentorship Scheme for Early-Career Arab Film Programmers

01 March '22

SAFAR Film Festival is the only festival in the United Kingdom dedicated to presenting cinema from across the Arab world, offering a unique space for people to celebrate and explore Arab cinema in all its diversity. Founded in 2012 and running on a biennial basis since then, SAFAR has developed and grown over the years, presenting themed programmes which champion the inclusion of new, recent and older films in its selections. SAFAR also develops the UK film landscape through industry events and opportunities for early-career Arab British filmmakers.  

2022 marks a special year for us: not only are we celebrating 10 years of SAFAR but we are also are planning our largest edition yet and expanding our programme significantly. Festival plans will be announced soon in the Spring. 

As part of this expansion we are delighted to offer a new opportunity for early-career Arab film programmers, SAFAR Futures. We will also be running another iteration of our SAFAR Arab Film Development Workshop, alongside more opportunities for Arab British filmmakers to learn, develop their craft and get involved in the Festival. 


About SAFAR Futures

SAFAR Futures is a new mentorship programme for early-career Arab film programmers. 

We are looking for 3 enthusiastic film programmers who will work together to create an event for this year’s SAFAR Film Festival. Over 3 months, you will devise, programme and run the event at the Festival in London in July, taking ownership of it from start to finish. 

You will receive guidance from and work alongside the core Festival team and you will also benefit from 3 dedicated mentoring sessions with external industry specialists. We will structure the programme depending on mentees’ needs, however our aim is for you to leave with experience in/knowledge of programming, securing films from distributors, marketing and copywriting, working with venues, event management, booking guests and more.  

You will receive a bursary of £500 to cover your expenses. The programme will commence with a day-long workshop at the Arab British Centre in London, with at least 3 subsequent shorter workshops/meetings to be held there too. Timings are flexible depending on availability however please note that you must be available from 1-16 July. 

Person Specification 

  • Aged 18-30 
  • Identifies as Arab* 
  • Based in the UK 
  • Have a demonstrable interest in film from the Arab world 
  • Enthusiastic, open minded and enjoy working in a team
  • No prior qualifications required 


How to Apply

Please fill in the form below to apply for this opportunity. You cannot save as you go so we recommend writing your application in a separate document before uploading. Deadline to apply is Friday 25 March at 5pm. Applicants will be contacted by 1 April.


*The Arab world is defined as the 22 countries who are members of The Arab League: Algeria, Bahrain, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. 

SAFAR Futures welcomes applications from all people from or with heritage from these countries and cultures. While for some this may refer to nationality, for others the reference might be to identity and/or regionality.  

Whether you are born in or recently migrated to the UK, we recognise that the way participants self-identify is complex and personal and we welcome applications from all who want to be involved.