The buzz at this evening’s closing ceremony at the Beirut International Film Festival was palpable. A week long celebration of film ended with an award ceremony for the best short films and best documentaries. Having watched all the films as a member of the jury it was my great honour to read out the winners. Out Of The Darkness a documentary by Lebanese Sonia Habib won the gold Aleph statuette and Sanctity, a Saudi Arabian film by Ahd Kamel won best short film. I want to thank the organisers and most especially Ms Colette Naufal for allowing me to participate in this wonderful forum for Lebanese and regional films. It was refreshing to see a younger generation of film makers tackling tough subjects from rape to pleasure marriage and from revolution to the right to drive. Unfortunately due to the political instability plaguing us at the moment most of the winners could not attend the festival or pick up their prizes.