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Practical Labs

Acting for Camera & Directing Actors

Start date:
Apr 12, 2020
10 Sessions
Ability Level:

This ten-day workshop for aspiring professional film actors and directors, trains participants in the art of filming great performances. Actors will gain invaluable insight on how to stay in the moment and perform while mastering the technical aspects of acting for camera. Directors will learn practical techniques on how to guide actors through this process. These hands-on classes are divided into two parts⁠—involving both actors and directors throughout the programme.

PART I: The Anatomy of a Film Performance
The first five days will break down all the technical details of filming that an actor must consider, focusing on a different element each day. These sessions will include how to work with the film set and props, sound recording or effects, the camera, and lighting. On the fifth day, participants will learn the dialogue of a selected scene and practice incorporating all the techniques covered in part one of the lab.

PART II: Filming and Critiquing Specific Scenes
Each participating director chooses a scene from a script of their choice (preferably from one of their own projects) to direct in class under the guidance of the lead mentor—working with actors from the lab and a film crew. After filming the scene, rushes are screened and critiqued with the whole group at the end of the day.

Dates: 12 to 22 April, 2020
Application Deadline: 28 March, 2020

Sunday to Thursday, 5:00 PM – 9:30 PM
Friday (Day Off)
Saturday, 12:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Language: English
Fee: 1,500 QAR
Group Size: 5 Directors and up to 7 Actors
Ability Level: Intermediate to Advanced

Submission Requirements:

Please send the following as one Word or PDF document to specifying in the email subject line whether applying as an actor or a director:

1. Full name, email and contact phone number
2. A brief letter of intention explaining why you are applying to the lab (maximum one page)
3. Showreel, examples of previous work, or link to a website (if available)
4. Short biography
5. CV / Filmography
6. Copy of Qatar ID

Submission Process and Selection of Candidates:

The lab mentor and the DFI team will review applications, and potential candidates may be invited for a supplemental interview during the selection process. Please note that the submission of your application does not guarantee a place in the programme. Depending on the number of submissions, some applicants may be waitlisted or declined. All applicants will be notified of the results of their submission in a timely manner.

Lead Mentor:

Afef Ben Mahmoud
Actor / Director / Producer

Following studies in management at the Higher School of Economic and Commercial Sciences (ESSEC) in Tunis where she obtained her B.S in Economics and Management in 2004, Afef Ben Mahmoud received a degree in scriptwriting and directing in 2008. This was followed by a research master’s degree in Image Design at the Higher School of Design Sciences and Technologies in Tunis.

From a very young age, Afef started an artistic career as a dancer and actress. By 14 she joined Sihem Belkhodja Contemporary Dance Company under the supervision of well-known choreographers including Stephanie Nataf and Selma and Sofiane Ouissi, leading her to tour Tunisia and Europe with numerous shows. She also participated as a dancer in most musical shows by famous Tunisian stage director Fadhel Jaziri, co-founder of the renowned Le Nouveau Théâtre de Tunis.

Since then, Afef Ben Mahmoud has devoted herself to her acting career and held leading roles under the direction of great Tunisian directors such as Nouri Bouzid in ‘Making Of’, which won many awards in various international film festivals. In parallel to her studies, she began her film career as a director and directed three short films and a documentary.

Recently, Afef created her production company, Mesanges Films, and produced Nouri Bouzid’s latest film, ‘The Scarecrows’, in which she also plays one of the lead roles. The film had its world premiere in the Official Selection in the Sconfini section at the Venice Film Festival in 2019 and went on to win the Human Rights award.