The Platoon filmmaker’s jury will hand out six prizes: the Golden Yusr for Best Feature Film (which comes with $100,000), and Silver Yusrs for Best Director ($50,000), Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Cinematic Contribution.
The winner will be announced during the awarding ceremony on March 19.
Attending the festival, Stone will present a screening of a film he has chosen as an inspiration for his work, 1969 movie Z by Costa-Gavras.
Today, the festival also announced details of its inaugural program.
In total, 107 features and shorts that will screen. There will be 16 titles in competition, including Kitty Green’s Weinstein-inspired The Assistant, Derek Tsang’s Chinese hit Better Days, and local filmmaker Haifaa Al-Mansour’s The Perfect Candidate.
The festival will open with Saudi pic The Book Of Sun, directed by the local Godus brothers, which is also in competition.
The event’s debut edition won’t be without challenges. The festival is filling a hole in the region left by the closing of the Dubai International Film Festival in 2018. However, many potential attendees have expressed concern about the validity of holding this type of event in a state with such a controversial track record on human rights.