ZUMEFF Guidelines

9th Zayed University Middle East Film Festival 2018

Submission Guidelines

  • Participation is limited to students who are enrolled or were enrolled in the past year in an educational institution in the Middle East, including Turkey and Iran, and North Africa or students with Middle Eastern Origin who are enrolled or were enrolled in the past year in an educational institution worldwide.
  • Total length of each film should not exceed 30 minutes. All submitted films must be high quality copies.
  • Only one submission per student
  • You have three options to send us your film:

1) Google Drive
2) Vimeo
3) Snail Mail

To submit your film via Snail Mail you need to send us three copies of the film on DVD, labeled with filmmaker’s name, film title, educational institution, and duration via Aramex or another courier service to:

Zayed University Middle East Film Festival
Zayed University
PO Box 144534
Abu Dhabi, UAE
Telephone: +9712.599.3859

Entries WILL NOT be returned. Zayed University is not responsible for any damage or loss

  • You have to submit a completed online entry form and your film before 15 January 2018
  • There is no entry fee

Video specifications

  • MP4, MPEG, MOV, MPG, MPEG or AVI format

Contest Deadlines

  • Submission deadline is 15 January 2018
  • The top 5 films in each category will be evaluated by industry professionals.
  • Screenings will be held during the three-day festival on 26 – 28 February 2018.


  • ZU does not have any copyright rights. However, the top winning films will be part of a “Best of ZUMEFF” DVD that may play at selected film festivals abroad. Winning films will get full credit in these programs.


  • Keep in mind there will be English-speaking judges. Therefore, Arabic films should include English subtitles.

Judging Criteria

The films will be judged based on the following criteria:

  • Overall effectiveness: Was the filmmaker successful in delivering a compelling, engaging message or story to the audience?
  • Innovation: how creative and unique was the idea of the film?
  • Execution: How effective and original was the cinematography, sound, lighting and the overall editing? Did these elements help in delivering the message of the film to the audience?


  • Five awards will be given: Best Documentary Film, Best Narrative Film, Best Animation, Grand Prize Best of the Festival and twofour54 Best Emerging Filmmaker Award.