Established in 1989 and acquired by Qatar Media Services in 2012, Gulf Film is a film distribution company for major studios and independent films in the Gulf and Middle East. Today, Gulf Film sub-distributes Paramount and Universal titles in the Gulf territories; is the Middle East distributor for Studio Canal, Europa Corp, Relativity Media, Hyde Park and Voltage to name a few; and in partnership with Eagle Films, distributes Lionsgate, Nu Image and Sierra Affinity titles. An industry leader for over two decades, Gulf Film distributes and exhibits over 150 titles per annum.
Gulf Film has proudly established, built and nurtured relationships for nearly two and a half decades with major Hollywood studios and independent filmmakers. These valued relationships have not only allowed Gulf Film to grow and strengthen its market position but also allowed the medium of film and cinema to grow successfully within the region.
With a rich legacy of cinema firsts, a passion for movies and a mission to entertain film fans everywhere, Novo Cinemas is proud to be the largest and most visited chain of theatres in the Middle East.
The journey began in 2000, when Gulf Film established the Grand Cinemas brand as its exhibition arm. The launch of the flagship Grand Cineplex in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, would be the cornerstone of an entertainment chain that would soon extend across borders and introduce to the region such pioneering technologies as online booking, e-kiosks and the first cinema-dedicated mobile app, in addition to the UAE’s only IMAX screen.
In 2012, Grand Cinemas was acquired by Qatar Media Services (q.media) as part of the Gulf Film Group, and so began an exciting new chapter in our story. Attuned to the evolving social habits and needs of today’s movie-goers, in 2014 the chain was re-inaugurated as Novo Cinemas, an identity that would reflect the promise of a complete entertainment experience.
In the same year, Novo Cinemas opened its doors at World Trade Centre-Abu Dhabi, a location near and dear to Emirati hearts in the capital’s old central market, and took premium cinema to Qatar, welcoming movie-goers at the luxury island destination of The Pearl-Qatar. As a result, the expansive network now spans no fewer than 119 screens and 22,000 seats in 15 locations across the UAE, Qatar and Jordan. Ongoing expansion will see screen numbers grow to over 200 by 2015 – in Dubai’s Dragon Mart, Al Ain’s Boutik Mall, Bahrain’s Seef Muharraq Mall and Doha’s Tawar Mall, to name a few – and our IMAX network extended to four spectacular screens.
From exponential market share growth to acquisitions of screens and exhibitors, a journey that began in the late 80s has propelled Gulf Film and Grand Cinemas (now known as Novo Cinemas) into global brands, unique to the Middle East. Gulf Film's operations now account for over 50% of all movie distribution; and in 2012, the company's market share of admissions averaged 45% across the territories of UAE, Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman and Qatar.
For nearly two and a half decades, Gulf Film has claimed market leadership, always a step ahead with innovative approaches and aggressive expansion. Gulf Film’s robust growth in revenues and profitability is owed to tenacious management and the vision of its parent company, Qatar Media Services.
With its recent acquisition by Qatar Media Services, Gulf Film and Novo Cinemas are set to continue expansion within current and emerging markets. The combination of q.media, Gulf Film and Novo Cinemas creates a regional powerhouse in entertainment that will provide the latest in film innovation and set worldwide standards in the region and beyond.
Wholly owned by the Qatari government, Qatar Media Services (q.media) is dedicated to providing the latest and most innovative advertising and media concepts to the Middle East region. q.media was established in 2004 with the vision to work in outdoor, audio and visual advertising, events and conferences and the film industry. In addition to a healthy business portfolio within Qatar, q.media also owns a number of operations globally, including the largest film distributor and exhibitor in the Middle East, and a leader in the field of outdoor advertising, which operates throughout Australia, Indonesia and Vietnam.