(May 16, 2012, New York, New York) â€“World class films with an African focus, international music performances, international and local art exhibitions, and stunning natural settings are in store for cinema and art lovers attending the 15th annual Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF) July 7-15, 2012 in Tanzania. The 2012 Festival theme, â€œWhen Global Images Meet in Zanzibarâ€, captures the essence of the diversity of humanity and humanityâ€™s most precious resource- creativity- through films.
In addition to showcasing the worldâ€™s most captivating and cutting-edge talent in film, there will also be live music and dance, art exhibits, a range of film and video industry workshops, seminars, a childrenâ€™s film panorama, bullfighting in Pemba, and dhow races in Unguja.
Stone Town, the Festivalâ€™s venue in Zanzibar, is part of the United Republic of Tanzania and is aÂ UNESCO World Heritage Site. This colorful port provides an exotic setting for the nine days of festivities. ZIFF has captivated serious followers of international film and music, students of African culture both past and present, and travelers interested in arts-centered fun for over a decade. Originally called the Festival of the Dhow Countries, the Zanzibar International Film Festival is now the largest annual event of its kind in East Africa. The Festival events in Stone Town typically attract 7,000 foreign visitors and more than 149,000 localÂ guests; while the total number of people attending all the Festival eventsÂ held throughout Zanzibar, Pemba, and Tanzania Mainland is 150,000 with over 40 countries being represented.
According to Dr. Aloyce Nzuki, Managing Director of the Tanzania Tourist Board (TTB), â€œthe annual ZIFF event, which grows in popularity from year to year, also attracts visitors because of the unique opportunity to combine a rich cultural experience with a safari to some of Tanzaniaâ€™s world-renowned game sanctuaries and archaeological sites.Â Short flights from Zanzibar can connect visitors to Arusha, the gateway to the northern safari circuit including the Serengeti and Kilimanjaro as well as the Ngorongoro Crater; and to Dar es Salaam (only a 15 flight) the gateway to the South, including Ruaha National Park and the Selous Game Reserve.Â All these create great pre or post Festival tour options.â€
For more information on the Zanzibar International Film Festival, visit http://www.ziff.or.tz/. The official tour operator for ZIFF is Zanzibar Festival Tours. The tour offers a 10-night program to the Festival from July 6-16, 2012 including expert guides, VIP passes to festival performances, exploration of Stone Town and some of the best beaches in the world. For more information on the tours, visit www.zanzibarfestivaltours.com.