Netflix Fund to support Arab Women Producers/Directors – Jennifer Green reports

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Netflix has announced a new $250,000 grant for women producers and directors in the Arab World through the Netflix Fund for Creative Equity in partnership with the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture.

According to a statement posted on Netflix’s website, the company has already shortlisted five projects from women in Tunisia, Lebanon and Morocco.

“The Arab world has a long-standing history of women in entertainment, and we’ve had incredible successes and firsts from the region that we’re all very proud of,” read a statement from Netflix Director of Content Acquisitions for Turkey, Middle East and North Africa, Nuha Eltayeb. “But in order to give more people a chance to see their lives reflected on screen, we need more women behind and in front of the camera.”

The five shortlisted projects are non-fiction The Mother of All Lies from Moroccan producer-director Asmae El Moudir, a trio of fiction endeavors from Lebanese producers Diala Kachmar, Jana Wehbe and Tania Khoury, and a final project from Tunisian director-producer Sarra Abidi.

Unveiled in February of last year, Netflix’s Fund for Creative Equity aims to provide opportunities for underrepresented communities in the entertainment industry to the tune of a promised $100 million investment over the next five years.

In its first year, the company says it committed $14.5 million towards programs serving underrepresented creatives around the world, $5 million of which went specifically to women.

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Jennifer Green

Jennifer Green is a regular contributor to Common Sense Media, The Hollywood Reporter, The Seattle Times and The San Francisco Chronicle. She was Screen International's correspondent in Spain for ten years. She launched the newspaper column and website Films from Afar to curate international films available for home streaming. She has served on film festival juries across Spain and North Africa and teaches journalism and film to university students.