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Thu 18 Apr 2019 02:06 PM

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How Khorfakkan's epic tale of resistance became a movie

Film has been produced to tell the story of the resistance put up by Khorfakkan's inhabitants during a Portuguese invasion over 500 years ago

How Khorfakkan's epic tale of resistance became a movie
The film, produced in Arabic and English, premiered after the inaugural ceremony of the Sharjah – Khorfakkan Road last weekend.

A historical film has been produced to tell the story of the epic resistance put up by Khorfakkan’s inhabitants during a Portuguese invasion over 500 years ago.

Khorfakkan 1507 is based on the book, Khorfakkan’s Resistance Against the Portuguese Invasion of September 1507, written by Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Ruler of Sharjah.

It tells the story of the invasion led by Portuguese naval commander General Afonso de Albuquerque and is a Sharjah Broadcasting Authority production, developed by Get Go Films Limited.

The film documents the local way of life in the city, with the invasion of the UAE’s eastern coastline the main highlight. The film has been directed by renowned Irish director, Maurice Sweeney.

Khorfakkan is a town and exclave in the emirate of Sharjah, located on the east coast of the UAE.

The project was closely followed up by the Ruler of Sharjah, who was present during preliminary shoots, and oversaw aspects of the production process, site allocation and costume design.

At the time, Khorfakkan was part of the Kingdom of Hormuz and run by one of its governors. Life in Khorfakkan city was peaceful at the time, inhabited by local tribes as well as people from neighbouring countries, including India and Persia, all co-existing in harmony.

This was changed by the arrival of the Portuguese fleet of six ships chased a local boat to arrive at Khorfakkan’s shores.

The film shows the brutal invasion where entire villages were in flames and entire families were being killed, but the locals led by the character named Abu Ali, played by actor Mohamed Amiri, did not surrender.

Syrian actor, Rasheed Assaf plays the character of General Afonso de Albuquerque. The film’s cast also includes Emirati actors Ahmed Al Jasmi, Mohammed Al Ameri, Dr Habib Ghloum, Mansour Al Fili, Abdullah bin Haidar, Abdulrahman Al Mulla, Mohammad Juma, Ashjan, Bodour, and late actor Hameed Sambeej.

All the scenes of the film were shot on Khorfakkan’s shores, its farms, mountains and ancient city.

Mohamed Hassan Khalaf, director general of Sharjah Broadcasting Authority and executive producer of Khorfakkan 1507, said: “The devotion of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah in preserving and presenting the region’s history adds immense value to our culture. This film, for example, has opened an important window to the UAE’s crucial historical events, which we may not otherwise be able to learn about. Turning one of the region’s most critical historical episodes into a film translates the vision of His Highness to reach out to all age groups and segments of society.”

The film, produced in Arabic and English, premiered after the inaugural ceremony of the Sharjah – Khorfakkan Road last weekend.